Phase-Variance Optical Coherence Tomography

A Technique for Noninvasive Angiography
Published:October 22, 2013DOI:


      Phase-variance optical coherence tomography (PV-OCT) provides volumetric imaging of the retinal vasculature without the need for intravenous injection of a fluorophore. We compare images from PV-OCT and fluorescein angiography (FA) for normal individuals and patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and diabetic retinopathy.


      This is an evaluation of a diagnostic technology.


      Four patients underwent comparative retinovascular imaging using FA and PV-OCT. Imaging was performed on 1 normal individual, 1 patient with dry AMD, 1 patient with exudative AMD, and 1 patient with nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy.


      Fluorescein angiography imaging was performed using a Topcon Corp (Tokyo, Japan) (TRC-50IX) camera with a resolution of 1280 (H) × 1024 (V) pixels. The PV-OCT images were generated by software data processing of the entire cross-sectional image from consecutively acquired B-scans. Bulk axial motion was calculated and corrected for each transverse location, reducing the phase noise introduced from eye motion. Phase variance was calculated through the variance of the motion-corrected phase changes acquired within multiple B-scans at the same position. Repeating these calculations over the entire volumetric scan produced a 3-dimensional PV-OCT representation of the vasculature.

      Main Outcome Measures

      Feasibility of rendering retinal and choroidal microvasculature using PV-OCT was compared qualitatively with FA, the current gold standard for retinovascular imaging.


      Phase-variance OCT noninvasively rendered a 2-dimensional depth color-coded vasculature map of the retinal and choroidal vasculature. The choriocapillaris was imaged with better resolution of microvascular detail using PV-OCT. Areas of geographic atrophy and choroidal neovascularization imaged by FA were depicted by PV-OCT. Regions of capillary nonperfusion from diabetic retinopathy were shown by both imaging techniques; there was not complete correspondence between microaneurysms shown on FA and PV-OCT images.


      Phase-variance OCT yields high-resolution imaging of the retinal and choroidal microvasculature that compares favorably with FA.


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