[Heterochromatic flicker photometry for the detection of the risk of age-related macular degeneration]

Porras Povedano M, Llanos Méndez A
Record ID 32013000371
Authors' objectives: Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is a major public health problem both quantitatively, by its high prevalence, and qualitatively, by the high number of cases of blindness it causes, being the leading cause of blindness in developed countries. In recent years, hypotheses have been proposed about the relationship between the density of macular pigment (MP) and AMD. In order to determine the risk of AMD, devices have been developed for measuring this parameter using Intermittent Heterochromatic Flicker Photometry (HFP), two of them for commercial use (MacuScope™ and MPS 9000) and two for research (Macular Densitometer and Eyemet Maculometer). A systematic literature review was made in order to determine the efficacy and safety of portable HFP devices in detecting AMD risk.
Authors' recommendations: The review retrieved 11 studies on precision and validity of the test and one of a transverse design that assessed the correlation between the parameter studied and AMD. The quality was moderate. The evidence gathered regarding HFP, did not provide high levels of precision (repeatability coefficient of 0.035 to 0.58; reproducibility coefficient of 0.08 to 0.49, percentage of variation between measurements between 11.5% and 36.1%, and test-retest correlations between 0.68 and 0.97) and validity of the technique (Pearson correlation coefficient between 0.163 and 0.78, and Bland-Altman about 94%) for MP density measurement as a marker for risk of developing AMD, nor did it ensure the precision of detecting changes in its levels in follow-up periods. The device which presented better precision values was the Macular Densitometer R, a device more closely linked to research than to commercial use. Screening programmes have a series of requirements, due to the multitude of factors that are affected, including those related to disease, to the screening technique, to health systems, as well as ethical implications. The complications are greater when screening for a risk and not a disease. Thus, the role of MP as a risk factor for developing AMD, and the effectiveness of preventive treatment with carotenoid supplements, are not yet clear.
Project Status: Completed
Year Published: 2012
English language abstract: An English language summary is available
Publication Type: Not Assigned
Country: Spain
MeSH Terms
  • Humans
  • Macula Lutea
  • Photometry
  • Macular Degeneration
  • Middle Aged
  • Aged
  • Flicker Fusion
Organisation Name: Andalusian Health Technology Assessment Area
Contact Address: Area de Evaluacion de Tecnologias Sanitarias Sanitarias de Andalucia (AETSA) Avda. Innovación, s/n Edificio Arena 1. Sevilla (Spain) Tel. +34 955 006 309
Contact Name: aetsa.csalud@juntadeandalucia.es
Contact Email: aetsa.csalud@juntadeandalucia.es
Copyright: Andalusian Agency for Health Technology Assessment (AETSA)
This is a bibliographic record of a published health technology assessment from a member of INAHTA or other HTA producer. No evaluation of the quality of this assessment has been made for the HTA database.