Hyperreflective Membrane at the Vitreoretinal Interface in Diabetic Macular Edema: A Finding in Ultra-High-Resolution Optical Coherence Tomography

Iori Wada, Shintaro Nakao, Mitsuru Arima, Keijiro Ishikawa, Muneo Yamaguchi, Yoshihiro Kaizu, Haruka Sekiryu, Kenichiro Mori, Kohei Kiyohara, Atsunobu Takeda, Tatsuro Ishibashi, Srinivas R. Sadda, Koh Hei Sonoda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Detecting subtle vitreoretinal interface (VRI) findings, such as a posterior hyaloid membrane, is difficult with conventional retinal imaging. We compared ultra-high-resolution spectral domain optical coherence tomography (UHR-SD-OCT) with standard-resolution OCT (SD-OCT) for the imaging of VRI abnormalities in diabetic retinopathy (DR). Methods: This prospective cross-sectional study included 113 consecutive patients (91 patients with diabetes and 22 healthy controls). The VRI was evaluated, and the results were compared between the conventional SD-OCT and UHR-SD-OCT images. VRI findings were also investigated before and after internal limiting membrane peeling during vitrectomy for proliferative DR. Results: A total of 159 eyes (87.4%) of 91 patients with diabetes were analyzed. UHR-SD-OCT could detect a hyperreflective layer at the VRI, in which en face OCT showed a membrane-like structure, termed the hyperreflective membrane (HRMe). The preop-erative HRMe could not be detected in all patients with proliferative DR who under-went internal limiting membrane peeling during vitrectomy. Although the HRMe did not correlate with the DR stage, eyes with diabetic macular edema (DME) (64.5%) showed a significant HRMe with UHR-SD-OCT more frequently than those without DME (35.8%) (P = 0.005). Conclusions: UHR-SD-OCT can detect the HRMe at the VRI in DR eyes, particularly in eyes with DME. The HRMe may present a thickened posterior hyaloid membrane that contributes to DME development. Translational Relevance: UHR-SD-OCT detects slight changes in the VRI in DR eyes. In the future, it may help to elucidate the mechanism of DME formation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number21
JournalTranslational Vision Science and Technology
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Ophthalmology


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