Correlation of the number of retinal ganglion cells with humphrey visual field abnormalities in human glaucoma eyes

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Purpose. To correlate the number of retinal ganglion cells at specific retinal locations with Humphrey visual field abnormalities to corresponding locations in human glaucoma eyes. Methods. Five eyes from five patients whose ophthalmologists provided both extensive clinical data and Humphrey threshold visual field tests within 2 years of death were compared to five eyes from five patients without a history of eye disease and a normal retinal appearance upon gross examination. Twenty-eight specific retinal locations corresponding to the positions at which the 30-2 program of the Humphrey instrument presents a test object were chosen for analysis. Retinal samples, centered on the zone of a field test point, were removed by a 1.5 mm trephine and embedded in JB-4 resin. The tissue was then sectioned at 1 micron and stained with .1% thionin. Ganglion cells were identified and counted by position in the ganglion cell layer and nuclear morphology. Retinal lengths were also measured to calculate linear density. Optic nerve sections of each eye were evaluated in a masked fashion by a quantitative system to estimate the number of fibers present. Results. A trend correlating the number of ganglion cells with Humphrey visual field abnormalities was observed in our preliminary study of five glaucoma eyes and five control eyes. Since a larger number of eyes are necessary for statistical significance, we are currently examining an additional 15 glaucoma eyes and an additional 15 control eyes. Conclusion. Preliminary data suggests a trend correlating the number of ganglion cells with Humphrey visual field abnormalities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1997


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology

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