Myopic maculopathy (MM) is one of the major causes of visual impairment and irreversible blindness in eyes with pathologic myopia (PM). However, the classification of each type of lesion associated with MM has not been determined. Recently, a new MM classification system, known as the ATN grading and classification system, was proposed; it is based on the fundus photographs and optical coherence tomography (OCT) images and includes three variable components: atrophy (A), traction (T), and neovascularization (N). This study aimed to perform an independent evaluation of interobserver and intraobserver agreement for the recently developed ATN grading system for MM.
This was a retrospective study. Fundus photographs and OCT images of 125 patients (226 eyes) with various MMs were evaluated and classified using the ATN grading of the new MM classification system by four blinded and independent evaluators (2 attending ophthalmologists and 2 ophthalmic residents). All cases were randomly re-evaluated by the same observers after an interval of 6 weeks. The kappa coefficient (κ) and 95% confidence interval (CI) were used to determine the interobserver and intraobserver agreement.
The interobserver agreement was substantial when considering the maculopathy type (A, T, and N). The weighted Fleiss κ values for each MM type (A, T, and N) were 0.651 (95% CI: 0.602-0.700), 0.734 (95% CI: 0.689-0.779), and 0.702 (95% CI: 0.649-0.755), respectively. The interobserver agreement when considering the subtypes was good or excellent, except for stages A1, A2, and N1, in which the weighted κ value was less than 0.6, with moderate agreement. The intraobserver agreement of types and subtypes was excellent, with κ > 0.8. No significant differences were observed between the attending ophthalmologists and residents for interobserver reliability or intraobserver reproducibility.
The ATN classification allows an adequate agreement among ophthalmologists with different qualifications and by the same observer on separate occasions. Future prospective studies should further evaluate whether this classification can be better implemented in clinical decision-making and disease progression assessments.