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Research Letter
May 2016

Elemental Composition of Ora Serrata Pearls—A Form of Focal Nodular Drusen

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Ophthalmology, State University of New York Upstate Medical University, Syracuse
  • 2Department of Ophthalmology, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
  • 3Wills Eye Hospital, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • 4Department of Pathology, State University of New York Upstate Medical University, Syracuse
JAMA Ophthalmol. 2016;134(5):601-603. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2016.0327

Examination of the peripheral fundus may reveal discrete pearl-like structures at the furthest extent of the retina. They occur throughout the ora serrata region, but only where a tongue of retina tissue in the form of a dentate process overlies the pars plana. In the later stages, the pigment epithelial covering is lost, exposing the pearl as a glistening bead. To our knowledge, the clinical significance and precise composition of these structures have not been described, although there is suggestion that they consist of drusenlike material. In this study, scanning electron microscopy with energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy (SEM-EDS) was applied in conjunction with classic histochemical staining techniques to characterize the elemental content of these pearls.

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