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Julian Johannes Kuhlmann, Kai Rothaus, Xiaoyi Jiang, Britta Heimes-Bussmann, Henrik Faatz, Marius Book, Daniel Pauleikhoff; Axial Stretching of Vessels in the Retinal Vascular Plexus With 3D OCT-Angiography. Trans. Vis. Sci. Tech. 2022;11(2):21. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/tvst.11.2.21.
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The purpose of this study is to describe and quantify the nonpathological axial stretching in the retinal vascular plexus in three-dimensional (3D) optical coherence tomography angiography (OCTA) images.
The 3D vascular network underneath the inner limiting membrane of OCTA volumes was labeled as ground truth (GT) data. To analyze the cross-section area of the vessels the width and depth of the vessels in the GT data were computed and an elliptical quotient was proposed to quantify the axial stretching.
A total of 21 3D OCTA volumes were labeled. It was found that the vessels in 3D OCTA images are stretched in the direction of the A-Scan by a factor of 2.46 ± 1.82 with a median of 2.24. Furthermore, a larger cross-section area leads to higher axial stretching.
The elliptical shape of the cross-section area of the vessel does not match with the expected pathology of the vascular network in the human eye. Therefore a correction of the volume data before a 3D analysis is recommended.
This work gives a systematic insight to the stretched shape of vessels in 3D OCTA images and is relevant for further clinical research analyzing the 3D vascular network.
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