April 2021

Stern-Ascher CN, North VS, Garg A, Ananth CV, Wapner RJ, Bearelly S. Subfoveal Choroidal Thickness and Associated Changes of Angiogenic Factors in Women with Severe Preeclampsia. Am J Perinatol 2021;38(5):482-489.Abstract
OBJECTIVE:  Severe preeclampsia complicates roughly 1% of all pregnancies. One defining feature of severe preeclampsia is new onset visual disturbance. The accessibility of the choroid to high-resolution, noninvasive imaging makes it a reasonable target of investigation for disease prediction, stratification, or monitoring in preeclampsia. This study aimed to compare subfoveal choroidal thickness between women with severe preeclampsia and those with normotensive pregnancies, and to investigate associations between such findings and other indicators of disease severity, including gestational age and serum angiogenic factors. STUDY DESIGN:  We designed a case-control study comprised of 36 women diagnosed with severe preeclampsia (cases) matched to 37 normotensive women (controls) by race/ethnicity and parity, all diagnosed in the postpartum period. All patients underwent enhanced depth imaging spectral-domain optical coherence tomography and serum analysis. RESULTS:  Cases showed no difference in subfoveal choroidal thickness compared with controls ( = 0.65). Amongst cases, subfoveal choroidal thickness and gestational age at delivery were inversely related ( = 0.86,  < .001). There was a positive association of placental growth factor with subfoveal choroidal thickness amongst cases ( = 0.54,  = 0.002). CONCLUSION:  This study suggests a relationship between the degree of disease severity and the magnitude of choroidal thickening. We also show an association between this index and placental growth factor level in the postpartum period.