Cutting Edge of Traumatic Maculopathy with Spectral-domain Optical Coherence Tomography – A Review

Sílvia Mendes, António Campos, Joana Campos, Arminda Neves, Diana Beselga, Cristina Fernandes, João Paulo Castro Sousa


This article reviews clinically relevant data regarding traumatic maculopathy (TM), frequently observed in clinical practice, especially due to sport or traffic accident injuries. It is characterized by transient gray-whitish retinal coloration and reduction of visual acuity (VA) with closed, blunt object globe trauma of their prior. It may be limited to the posterior pole (Berlin’s edema), or peripheral areas of the retina. Spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT) provides detail insight using high resolution cross-sectional tomographs of the ocular tissue. It is a potent non-invasive tool for the clinician to follow-up. Clinicians are, thereby empowered with a tool that enables evaluation of the retinal status and allows for prediction of the prognosis. Spectral-domain optical coherence tomography supports the idea that the major site of injury is in the photoreceptor and layers of the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). Depending on the severity of the trauma, SD-OCT may reveal differential optical densities of intraretinal spaces ranging from disappearance of the thin hyporeflective optical space in mild lesions, or areas of disruption of the inner segment/outer segment (IS/OS) junction and hyperreflectivity of the overlying retina, pigment disorders and retinal atrophy, in more severe cases. The prognosis for recovery of vision is generally good, and improvement occurs within 3-4 weeks.


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