Ocular biometric investigation of anisometropia

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


The thesis aims to define further the biometric correlates in anisometropic eyes in order to provide a structural foundation for propositions concerning the development of ametropia.Biometric data are presented for 40 anisometropes and 40 isometropic controls drawn from Caucasian and Chinese populations.The principal finding was that the main structural correlate of myopia is an increase in axial rather than equatorial dimensions of the posterior globe. This finding has not been previously reported for in vivo work on humans. The computational method described in the thesis is a more accessible method for determination of eye shape than current imaging techniques such as magnetic resonance imaging or laser Doppler interferometry (LDI). Retinal contours derived from LDI and computation were shown to be closely matched. Corneal topography revealed no differences in corneal characteristics in anisometropic eyes, which supports the finding that anisometropia arises from differences in vitreous chamber depth.The corollary to axial expansion in myopia, that is retinal stretch in central regions of the posterior pole, was investigated by measurement of disc-to-fovea distances (DFD) using a scanning laser ophthalmoscope. DFD was found to increase with increased myopia, which demonstrates the primary contribution made by posterior central regions of the globe to axial expansion.The ocular pulse volume and choroidal blood flow, measured with the Ocular Blood Flow Tonograph, were found to be reduced in myopia; the reductions were found to be significantly correlated with vitreous chamber depth. The thesis includes preliminary data on whether the relationship arises from the influx of a blood bolus into eyes of different posterior volumes or represents actual differences in choroidal blood flow.The results presented in this thesis show the utility of computed retinal contour and demonstrate that the structural correlate of myopia is axial rather than equatorial expansion of the vitreous chamber. The technique is suitable for large population studies and its relative simplicity makes it feasible for longitudinal studies on the development of ametropia in, for example, children.
Date of Award1997
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorBernard Gilmartin (Supervisor)


  • Ocular biometric investigation
  • anisometropia
  • myopia
  • retinal contour
  • biometry
  • peripheral refraction

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