Effects of COVID-19 infection on retinal vascular density and choroidal thickness measured by optical coherence tomography angiography

Gökmen O., Ozgur G.

Photodiagnosis and Photodynamic Therapy, vol.44, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 44
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.pdpdt.2023.103859
  • Journal Name: Photodiagnosis and Photodynamic Therapy
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, MEDLINE
  • Keywords: COVID-19 vaccine, Optical coherence tomography angiography, Retinal vascular density, COVID-19 infection, SARS CoV-2 virus, Vascular effects, Choroidal thickness
  • Van Yüzüncü Yıl University Affiliated: Yes


Aim: The present study evaluates the possible effects of COVID-19 on choroid thickness, the Foveal Avascular Zone (FAZ) and retinal vascular indices in the same individuals who had Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) and Optical Coherence Tomography Angiography (OCTA) data prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods: The OCT and OCTA images of the same individuals with no known ophthalmic pathology who developed a COVID-19 infection were obtained were retrieved retrospectively from the database and compared with the repeated images of OCT and OCTA images 1–2 months after COVID-19 infection. Results: Eighty eyes of 40 patients (26 female [65%], 14 male [35%]) who had developed a prior Covid-19 infection were included in the study. When comparing the measurements of the same participants before and after Covid-19 infection, no significant difference was detected in the mean average choroidal thicknesses (p=0.998), average superficial (p=0.425) and deep (p=0.333) retinal vascular densities, and superficial (p=0.991) and deep (p=0.075) FAZ measurements. Conclusions: No significant effect of COVID-19 on choroid thickness, FAZ or retinal vascular densities was noted in the present study, although there are some studies in literature with equivocal results.