Abstract

Gabor-domain optical coherence microscopy (GD-OCM) was applied ex vivo in the investigation of corneal cells and their surrounding microstructures with particular attention to the corneal endothelium. Experiments using fresh pig eyeballs, excised human corneal buttons from patients with Fuchs’ endothelial dystrophy (FED), and healthy donor corneas were conducted. Results show in a large field of view (1mm×1mm) high definition images of the different cell types and their surrounding microstructures through the full corneal thickness at both the central and peripheral locations of porcine corneas. Particularly, an image of the endothelial cells lining the bottom of the cornea is highlighted. As compared to healthy human corneas, the corneas of individuals with FED show characteristic microstructural alterations of the Descemet’s membrane and increased size and number of keratocytes. The GD-OCM-based imaging system developed may constitute a novel tool for corneal imaging and disease diagnosis. Also, importantly, it may provide insights into the mechanism of corneal physiology and pathology, particularly in diseases of the corneal endothelium.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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