In vivo measurement of regional corneal stiffness

Kwok Cheung Andrew Lam, Ying Hon, Shu Hao Lu, Guo Zhen Chen, David Chuen Chun Lam

Research output: Unpublished conference presentation (presented paper, abstract, poster)PosterAcademic researchpeer-review


Purpose : To measure corneal stiffness at central and peripheral regions and to study effect from direction of gaze during peripheral measurement

Methods : Twenty-five young Chinese subjects (age, 21-26 years) had corneal stiffness measured using a corneal indentation device. It consisted of a 2-mm diameter indenter to measure the force required to indent at a 1-mm depth. Measurements were obtained randomly at the central cornea and 3mm from the temporal limbus. For temporal measurement, subjects maintained a primary fixation position and fixating 60-degree nasally. Corneal thickness at the center (CCT) and temporal (TCT) region were measured using swept-source anterior optical coherence tomography.

Results : No significant between-eye difference in corneal thickness and corneal stiffness was found. Results from right eye were used for analysis. The mean central corneal stiffness was 0.070 (+/- 0.0065) N/mm. The mean temporal corneal stiffness was 0.074 (+/- 0.0074) N/mm at primary gaze, and 0.080 (+/- 0.0067) N/mm when looking nasally. Repeated measures ANOVA showed significant difference of the three results (F = 21.36, p < 0.001). Post hoc test revealed significant difference between central corneal stiffness and temporal corneal stiffness at primary fixation (p < 0.024). Since TCT was significantly thicker than CCT (paired t-test, t = -26.78, p < 0.001), corneal thickness difference at the two regions was set as covariate. The difference in corneal stiffness between the two regions was no longer significant (p = 0.692). Central corneal stiffness was positively associated with CCT (r = 0.48, p = 0.016), but correlation between temporal stiffness and temporal thickness was not significant (r = 0.23, p = 0.28). Post hoc test also revealed significant difference in temporal corneal stiffness at different direction of gaze (p < 0.007).

Conclusions : We demonstrated in vivo corneal stiffness measurement at different locations. A stiffer temporal cornea was due to its increased corneal thickness. However, there should be factors other than corneal thickness affecting peripheral corneal stiffness. Practitioner should be aware of effect from direction of gaze in peripheral corneal stiffness measurement.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017
EventAssociation for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) Annual Meeting 2017 -
Duration: 7 May 201711 May 2017


ConferenceAssociation for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) Annual Meeting 2017
Abbreviated titleARVO 2017


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