RETINAL–CHOROIDAL ANASTOMOSIS IN MACULAR TELANGIECTASIA TYPE 2

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Abstract

Purpose:

To investigate the deep retinal vascular changes potentially present in macular telangiectasis Type 2 (MacTel 2) with projection resolved optical coherence tomography angiography including volume rendering.

Methods:

Retrospective consecutive evaluation of patients with MacTel 2 in a community-based retinal referral practice with a comprehensive ophthalmologic examination to include optical coherence tomography and projection-resolved optical coherence tomography angiography with volume rendering. Main outcome measures were the characterization of vessel presence and anatomical arrangement in the outer retina.

Results:

There were 26 eyes of 13 patients with a mean age of 64.9 (±11.3) years, and 6 were men. The mean visual acuity was logMAR 0.4 (Snellen equivalent 20/50). No eye had signs of choroidal neovascularization or exudation. Focal hyperpigmentation was seen in 13 (50%) and right-angle veins in 17 (65%) eyes. Retinal–choroidal anastomoses were seen in 17 (65%) eyes. These anastomoses typically occurred in multiple clusters of small vessels. The presence of anastomoses was associated with pigment (P < 0.001), although the anastomoses did not necessarily colocalize with the pigment, and right-angle veins (P < 0.001), which were found in every eye with a retinal–choroidal anastomosis.

Conclusion:

Retinal–choroidal anastomoses were commonly observed in eyes with MacTel 2 using projection-resolved optical coherence tomography angiography. One animal model for MacTel 2 uses very low-density lipoprotein receptor mutant mice and shows multiple retinal–choroidal anastomoses in the disease pathogenesis as well. These findings suggest MacTel 2 is more than just a neurodegenerative disease with secondary vascular abnormalities, as the choroid may be involved in the disease process.

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