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Ruiz-Medrano, Jorge MD*; Flores-Moreno, Ignacio MD, PhD*,†; Peña-García, Pablo MSc; Montero, Javier A. MD, PhD; García-Feijóo, Julián MD, PhD*; Duker, Jay S. MD§; Ruiz-Moreno, José M. MD, PhD†,¶

doi: 10.1097/IAE.0000000000001347
Original Study

Purpose: To study the changes in the choroidal layers thickness with age in a healthy population using swept-source optical coherence tomography.

Methods: Retrospective data analysis of a subgroup of eyes from a previous single-center, prospective, cross-sectional, noninterventional study. One hundred and sixty-nine healthy eyes were evaluated using swept-source optical coherence tomography. Inclusion criteria were best-corrected visual acuity between 20/20 and 20/25, spherical equivalent between ±3 diopters, and no systemic or ocular diseases. Two independent investigators determined the macular horizontal choroidal thickness (CT) and the Haller's layer thickness across a 9 mm line centered at the fovea. Subjects were divided into five age groups.

Results: Mean subfoveal choroidal thickness was 305.76 ± 80.59 μm (95% confidence interval: 294.85–319.33). Mean subfoveal thickness for Haller's layer was 215.47 ± 67.70 μm (95% confidence interval: 207.30–227.86) and mean subfoveal thickness for choriocapillaris plus Sattler's layer was 87.31 ± 40.40 μm (95% confidence interval: 83.38–95.65). No significant differences were found due to gender. Choroidal thickness profile was similar between groups with choroidal thickness and Haller's layer thickness decreasing with age (P = 0.002).

Conclusion: Choroidal and Haller's layer thickness profiles are similar between different age groups. Age-related choroidal thinning is mostly at the expense of Haller's layer.

Choroidal thickness, Haller's layer, and Sattler's layer + choriocapillaris thickness profiles are similar when comparing different age groups, with the first two growing progressively thinner and the latter showing the same tendency but without statistical significance.

*Ophthalmology Unit, Clínico San Carlos University Hospital, Madrid, Spain;

Department of Ophthalmology, Castilla La Mancha University, Albacete, Spain;

Ophthalmology Unit, Pío del Río Hortega University Hospital, Valladolid, Spain;

§New England Eye Center, Tufts Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts; and

Insituto Europeo de la Retina (IER) Baviera, Spain.

Reprint requests: Jorge Ruiz-Medrano, MD, c/ Meléndez Valdés 38, Madrid 28015, Spain; e-mail:

Supported in part by a grant of the Spanish Ministry of Health, Instituto de Salud Carlos III, Red Temática de Investigación Cooperativa en Salud “Prevención, detección precoz y tratamiento de la patología ocular prevalente, degenerativa y crónica” (RD12/0034/0011, Spain); and by a Research to Prevent Blindness Unrestricted Grant (U.S.) to the New England Eye Center/Department of Ophthalmology, Tufts University School of Medicine and by the Massachusetts Lions Clubs (MA).

J. S. Duker is a consultant for and receives research support from Carl Zeiss Meditech, Inc (Dublin, CA) and Optovue Inc (Fremont, CA). J. M. Ruiz-Moreno receives research support from Topcon, Co (Tokyo, Japan). The remaining authors have no financial/conflicting interests to disclose.

© 2017 by Ophthalmic Communications Society, Inc.