To assess probable structural changes using spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT) on sickle-cell disease (SCD) and beta thalassemia major (B-TM) patients, without any retinal abnormalities.
This cross-sectional study included 32 B-TM, 34 SCD patients, and 44 healthy controls. One of the eyes of all participants was evaluated for SD-OCT and choroidal thickness, retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness, central macular thickness (CMT), ganglion cell complex (GCC).
Age, gender, and intraocular pressure (IOP) were not statistically different between the three groups. Hemoglobin (Hgb), hematocrite (Htc), and ferritin levels were not statistically different between the SCD and B-TM groups. Choroidal thickness at the subfoveal region was statistically higher in the control group (353.79 ± 71.93) than in the B-TM (317.41 ± 53.44) and SCD (283.21 ± 63.27) groups. In addition, it was statistically higher in the B-TM group than the SCD group (P ¼ 0.05). CMT did not differ among the three groups, average RNFL was only significantly thinner in SCD than in controls, and GCC thickness was significantly thinner in SCD than in controls and B-TM.
In both diseases, we can show early structural changes even if proliferative or non-proliferative retinopathy or other ocular manifestations were not developed yet.