Age- and sex-related differences in corneal epithelial thickness measured with spectral domain anterior segment optical coherence tomography among Egyptians

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Is to measure the corneal epithelial thickness (CET) in a group of healthy Egyptian population and to investigate its variation with age and sex using spectral domain-anterior segment optical coherence tomography (SD-AS-OCT).

This cross-sectional observational study includes 240 eyes of 120 healthy individuals (60 men, 60 women). Each gender was divided into 4 equal groups according to age as follows (18–29 years), (30–44 years), (45–59 years), and (60–80 years). The CET in 17 points over a corneal diameter of 6.0 mm was measured in each subject by SD-AS-OCT. The regional thickness changes were compared in different age groups of each gender separately and the correlations between the CET, age, and gender were analyzed.

The CET of the central cornea (2 mm), the paracentral and the midperipheral zones (2–5 and 5–6 mm, respectively) of all males and females groups demonstrates highly significant changes with age (P < .001) with no significant difference between males and females. The measured parameters in the 2 age groups below 45 and above 45 years old revealed statistically significant difference with lower values in the elderly group (P < .001).

The CET became thinner with age in the central, paracentral, and midperipheral zones in both genders and there is no difference between males and females. These findings could be valuable in refractive surgeries especially in age over 45.

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