BackgroundTo evaluate the macular vessel density (VD) and ganglion cell complex (GCC) thickness in pre-perimetric (PPG) and early perimetric primary open-angle glaucoma (PG) eyes, and to compare the diagnostic ability of the two measurements to discriminate PPG and early PG eyes from healthy eyes.MethodsSeventy-nine eyes in 72 subjects (31 normal, 26 PPG, and 22 early PG eyes) were included in the consecutive case series. Macular VD and GCC thickness were acquired simultaneously using the 6 × 6 mm2 high-density AngioRetina scanning mode. Diagnostic abilities were assessed using the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUROC).ResultsCompared to healthy eyes, whole image VD (wiVD) and GCC thickness were significantly lower in PPG and early PG eyes (all P < 0.025). The percent reduction of wiVD was lower than that of GCC thickness in early PG eyes (P < 0.05), while they were similar in PPG eyes (P > 0.05). Regionally, greater VD attenuation and GCC thinning were identified in the perifovea than in the parafovea in both groups (all P < 0.05). Moreover, the percent reduction of VD was less than that of GCC thickness in the perifoveal region in PPG eyes (P < 0.05). The AUROCs for wiVD and GCC thickness were 0.824 and 0.881, respectively, in PPG eyes (P > 0.05), and 0.918 and 0.977, respectively, in early PG eyes (P > 0.05).ConclusionsMacular VD and GCC thickness significantly decreased in PPG and early PG eyes. The perifoveal region appeared to be more vulnerable to macular VD attenuation and GCC thinning in early glaucoma. Our results showed that macular VD measurements may be helpful for detecting and understanding early glaucomatous damage.