Study to assess sub-foveal choroidal thickness in patients of preeclampsia through spectral domain optical coherence tomography

Astha Lalwani, Priye Suman Rastogi, Rehana Najam, Ashish Chander


Background: Aim of the study was to assess sub-foveal choroidal thickness (SFCT) in preeclamptic patients by SD ocular coherence tomography (SD-OCT) and correlate its changes with severity of preeclampsia.

Method: This case control, observational study, conducted in department of ophthalmology in association with department of obstetrics and gynaecology. The subjects were split into two groups: study and control. Study group was further divided in to 2 groups i.e., group A (Patients with preeclampsia) and group B (Pregnant females without preeclampsia). Control group (Group C) of non-pregnant females of similar age group. Total 100 patients were taken in each group. Subjects from both study and control groups were subjected to SD-OCT and mean choroidal thickness of both eyes was noted. Data was noted and comparison of 3 groups was done.

Results: Baseline characters viz, age, period of gestation, and parity was comparable among all the groups as p>0.05. Mean arterial pressure (MAP) was 102.72±9.81 and 84.56±7.83 in group A and B respectively with statistically significant difference as p<0.01. Following a post hoc analysis, it was discovered that the SFCT of the healthy pregnancy group did not differ substantially from that of the control group, however the SFCT of the pre-eclampsia group was significantly higher than that of the control and healthy pregnancy groups.

Conclusions: Pre-eclampsia causes a greater increase in sub-foveal choroidal thickness than normal pregnancy or non-pregnant women. It has the potential to be used as a predictor or marker of pre-eclampsia severity.


SFCT, Preeclampsia, MAP, OCT

Full Text:



Sibai B, Dekker G, Kupferminc M. Pre-eclampsia. Lancet. 2005;365(9461):785-99.

Sheth BP, Mieler WF. Ocular complications of pregnancy. Curr Opin Ophthalmol. 2001;12(6):455-63.

Schultz KL, Birnbaum AD, Goldstein DA. Ocular disease in pregnancy. Curr Opin Ophthalmol. 2005;16(5):308-14.

Yenerel N, Kucumen R. Pregnancy and the eye. Turk J Ophthalmol. 2015;45:213-9.

Jaffe G, Schatz H. Ocular manifestation of preeclampsia. Am J Ophthalmol. 1987;103:309-15.

Iida T, Kishi S. Choroidal vascular abnormalities in preeclampsia. Arch Ophthalmol. 2002;120:1406-7.

Valluri S, Adelberg DA, Curtis RS, Olk RJ. Diagnostic indocyanine green angiography in preeclampsia. Am J Ophthalmol. 1996;122:672-7.

Spaide RF, Koizumi H, Pozonni MC. Enhanced depth imaging spectral-domain optical coherence tomography. Am J Ophthalmol 2008;146:496–500.

Neudorfer M, Spierer O, Goder M. The prevalence of retinal and optical coherence tomography findings in preeclamptic women. Retina. 2014;34:1376-83.

Zhang J, Wang H, Yu Q, Tong Q, Lu Q. Enhanced depth imaging optical coherence tomography: a new way measuring choroidal thickness in pregnant women. J Ophthalmol. 2017:8296574.

Sharudin SN, Saaid R, Samsudin A, Mohamad NF. Subfoveal choroidal thickness in pre-eclampsia. Optom Vis Sci. 2020;97(2):81-5.

Benfica CZ, Zanella T, Farias LB, Oppermann ML, Canani LH, Lavinsky D. Choroidal thickness in preeclampsia measured by spectral-domain optical coherence tomography. Int Ophthalmol. 2019;39(9):2069-76.

Kim JW, Park MH, Kim YJ, Kim YT. Comparison of subfoveal choroidal thickness in healthy pregnancy and pre-eclampsia. Eye. 2016;30(3):349-54.

Sayin N, Kara N, Pirhan D. Subfoveal Choroidal Thickness in Preeclampsia: Comparison with Normal and Nonpregnant Women. Semin Ophthalmol. 2014;29:11-7.

Atas M, Acmaz G, Aksoy H, et al. Evaluation of the Macula, Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer and Choroid in Pre-eclampsia, Healthy Pregnant and Healthy Nonpregnant Women Using Spectral-domain Optical Coherence Tomography. Hypertens Pregnancy. 2014;33:299-310.

Evcimen Y, Onur IU, Cengiz H. Optical Coherence Tomography Findings in Pre-eclampsia: A Preliminary Receiver Operating Characteristic Analysis on Choroidal Thickness for Disease Severity. Curr Eye Res. 2019;44:916-20.

Ahn SJ, Woo SJ, Park KH. Retinal and choroidal changes with severe hypertension and their association with visual outcome. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2014;55:7775-85.