Non-contact laser-scanning confocal microscopy of the human cornea in vivo

Pritchard, Nicola, Edwards, Katie, & Efron, Nathan (2014) Non-contact laser-scanning confocal microscopy of the human cornea in vivo. Contact Lens and Anterior Eye, 37(1), pp. 44-48.

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PURPOSE To investigate the utility of using non-contact laser-scanning confocal microscopy (NC-LSCM), compared with the more conventional contact laser-scanning confocal microscopy (C-LSCM), for examining corneal substructures in vivo.

METHODS An attempt was made to capture representative images from the tear film and all layers of the cornea of a healthy, 35 year old female, using both NC-LSCM and C-LSCM, on separate days.

RESULTS Using NC-LSCM, good quality images were obtained of the tear film, stroma, and a section of endothelium, but the corneal depth of the images of these various substructures could not be ascertained. Using C-LSCM, good quality, full-field images were obtained of the epithelium, subbasal nerve plexus, stroma, and endothelium, and the corneal depth of each of the captured images could be ascertained.

CONCLUSIONS NC-LSCM may find general use for clinical examination of the tear film, stroma and endothelium, with the caveat that the depth of stromal images cannot be determined when using this technique. This technique also facilitates image capture of oblique sections of multiple corneal layers. The inability to clearly and consistently image thin corneal substructures - such as the tear film, subbasal nerve plexus and endothelium - is a key limitation of NC-LSCM.

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ID Code: 66397
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: cornea, non-contact laser scanning confocal microscopy, tear film
DOI: 10.1016/j.clae.2013.07.002
ISSN: 1367-0484
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > OPTOMETRY AND OPHTHALMOLOGY (111300)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Optometry & Vision Science
Deposited On: 12 Feb 2014 01:37
Last Modified: 10 Mar 2014 01:18

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