Assessment of the Vitreomacular Interface Using High-Resolution OCT in a Population-Based Cohort Study of Older Adults

Nicola B. Quinn, David H. Steel, Usha Chakravarthy, Tunde Peto, Barbra Hamill, Alyson Muldrew, Katie Graham, David Elliott, Riona Hennessy, Sharon Cruise, Bernadette McGuinness, Ian S. Young, Frank Kee, Ruth E. Hogg*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
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Purpose: To describe the prevalence of vitreomacular interface (VMI) features and their associated risk factors in the Northern Ireland Cohort for the Longitudinal Study of Ageing (NICOLA) Study. Design: Cross-sectional population-based study. Participants: Noninstitutionalized Northern Irish adults 40 years of age or older. Methods: Using geographic stratification, a representative sample of people in Northern Ireland was invited to participate in the NICOLA Study. SD OCT images of participants were graded for vitreomacular traction (VMT), macular hole (MH), and epiretinal membrane (ERM) according to the International Vitreomacular Traction Study Group. A subsample was graded in more detail to estimate the prevalence of VMA and VMA area detailing size and location of VMA. Descriptive analysis and risk factors for each VMI feature were determined using generalized estimating equations. Results were standardized to the Northern Ireland population census (2011). Main Outcome Measures: Cohort profile, standardized prevalence, and risk factor associations of each VMI feature. Results: Three thousand three hundred fifty-one NICOLA participants had gradable SD OCT images available for at least 1 eye. The prevalence of VMT was 0.5% (CI, 0.31%–0.70%), that for MH was 0.3% (CI, 0.23%–0.52%), and that for ERM was 7.6% (CI, 7.0%–8.3%). A detailed VMA analysis was performed on a subsample consisting of the first 1481 participants. The prevalence of VMA was 22.6% (CI, 21.1–24.2), and VMA area ranged from 0.25 to 42.7 mm2 (mean, 12.53 mm2; standard deviation, 6.90 mm2). In multivariate analyses, increased age was associated with an increased odds ratio (OR) of VMT, MH, and ERM. VMA area was positively associated with younger age and normal blood pressure. ERM and MH were present more often in more myopic eyes, associated with an increase in levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol and triglycerides. Conclusions: The epidemiologic characteristics of VMI features indicated that VMI interactions throughout life are age dependent. Vitreous separation reduced to a greater extent in the horizontal meridians compared with the vertical, differing from previous studies. Future longitudinal studies of the evolution of these VMI changes over time would be of great interest.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)801-813
Number of pages13
JournalOphthalmology Retina
Issue number8
Early online date29 Feb 2020
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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