Normative data assessment of peripapillary and macular vessel density and foveal avascular zone metrics using optical coherence tomography angiography in children.

Purpose: To quantify the vessel density (VD) of the macula and optic disc and foveal avascular zone (FAZ) in healthy children and to evaluate the effects of age, gender, axial length (AL), body mass index (BMI), and refractive errors on VD and FAZ. Methods: This study enrolled 92 eyes of 92 participants (42 boys and 50 girls). Optical coherence tomography angiography (OCTA) was performed using AngioVue (Avanti, Optivue). FAZ area, nonflow area, superficial and deep VD, FAZ perimeter, acircularity index of FAZ, foveal density, radial peripapillary capillary vessel density (RPCvd) were analyzed by gender. Correlations between the investigated OCTA parameters and age, AL, and BMI were evaluated. Results: Girls had significantly larger nonflow and FAZ area than boys (P=0.01 and P= 0.02). Superficial and deep VD at the fovea was significantly higher in boys compared to girls (P=0.01 and P=0.03). Inferior temporal and superior temporal RPCvds were significantly higher in girls than boys (P=0.01 and P=0.03). No significant difference was found in the macular and optical disc VD measurements within refractive groups (P>0.05, for all.) Regarding the correlation of age with FAZ and VD parameters, only nonflow area was positively correlated with age (r=0.22, P =0.03). Conclusions: This study provides normative data for children. While boys had greater foveal VD, girls had greater FAZ area and nonflow area. Refractive status of the eye and BMI did not influence the OCTA parameters. While nonflow area was positively correlated with age, other parameters were steady within the ages of 7 to 18 years.

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