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Joel-Benjamin Lincke, Chantal Dysli, Damian Jaggi, Rahel Fink, Sebastian Wolf, Martin S. Zinkernagel; The Influence of Cataract on Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging Ophthalmoscopy (FLIO). Trans. Vis. Sci. Tech. 2021;10(4):33. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/tvst.10.4.33.
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To investigate the influence of lens opacifications on fluorescence lifetime imaging ophthalmoscopy (FLIO).
Forty-seven eyes of 45 patients were included. Mean fluorescence lifetimes (Tm) were recorded with a fluorescence lifetime imaging ophthalmoscope in a short spectral channel (SSC) and a long spectral channel (LSC). Retinal and lens autofluorescence lifetimes were measured in subjects before and after cataract surgery. Lens opacification was graded using the Lens Opacities Classification System III (LOCS III) classification.
The retinal Tm decreased significantly after cataract surgery in both spectral channels (SSC: –53%, P < 0.0001; LSC: –26%, P = 0.0041). The lens Tm differed significantly between the crystalline and the artificial lens in both spectral channels (P < 0.0001). The “nuclear opacity” and “nuclear color” score of the LOCS III classification correlated significantly with the mean Tm difference in both spectral channels (P < 0.0001).
Lens opacification results in significantly longer retinal Tm. Therefore the lens status has to be considered when performing cross-sectional fluorescence lifetime analysis. Cataract-formation and cataract-surgery needs to be considered when conducting longitudinal studies. Grading of nuclear opacity following the LOCS III classification provides an approximate conversion formula for the mean change of lifetimes, which can be helpful in the interpretation of data in patients with lens opacities.
FLIO is significantly influenced by lens opacities. Using a lens opacity grading scheme and measuring fluorescence lifetimes before and after cataract surgery, an approximative conversion formula can be calculated, which enables the comparison of lifetimes after cataract surgery or over the course of time.
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