To investigate the prevalence of pachydrusen, soft drusen, and subretinal drusenoid deposits in eyes with different neovascular age-related macular degeneration (nAMD) subtypes, determine the relationship between each drusen type and the choroidal thickness, and analyze the distinct features of each nAMD subtype according to the drusen type.
Medical records involving 454 eyes from 454 patients with nAMD were retrospectively reviewed. The prevalence of each drusen type and the choroidal thickness and choroidal characteristics were evaluated according to the nAMD subtype.
Pachydrusen were prevalent in the typical nAMD (40.4%) and polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy (47.8%) groups and were not detected in the retinal angiomatous proliferation group. No significant drusen were detected in 24.3% of typical nAMD, 43.3% of polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy, and 0% of retinal angiomatous proliferation groups. Regardless of the nAMD subtype, pachydrusen, soft drusen, and subretinal drusenoid deposits were associated with a thick, moderately thick, and thin choroid, respectively. For eyes with typical nAMD, the prevalence of choroidal vascular hyperpermeability and extrafoveal neovascularization was significantly higher in the pachydrusen group than in the other groups. By contrast, the prevalence of Type 2 neovascularization was significantly lower in the pachydrusen group than in the subretinal drusenoid deposit group (P < 0.001 for all).
The prevalence of various drusen differed according to the nAMD subtypes, and each drusen type was strongly associated with the choroidal thickness. Typical nAMD showed distinct features according to the accompanying drusen type.