One-Year Results of Using a Treat-and-Extend Regimen without a Loading Phase with Anti-VEGF Agents in Patients with Treatment-Naive Diabetic Macular Edema

Schwarzer, Petra; Ebneter, Andreas; Munk, Marion; Wolf, Sebastian; Zinkernagel, Martin S. (2019). One-Year Results of Using a Treat-and-Extend Regimen without a Loading Phase with Anti-VEGF Agents in Patients with Treatment-Naive Diabetic Macular Edema. Ophthalmologica, 241(4), pp. 220-225. Karger 10.1159/000495623

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PURPOSE: To evaluate real-life outcomes in treatment-naive patients with diabetic macular edema (DME) treated with anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) agents using a treat-and-extend regimen without a fixed loading phase. METHODS: Best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) and central retinal thickness (CRT) measured using optical coherence tomography at baseline and after 1 year of treatment, intervals and number of injections were analyzed. Subgroup analysis was performed to compare anatomical and functional outcomes between patients receiving ranibizumab or aflibercept. RESULTS: Seventy-five eyes of 61 patients met the inclusion criteria and had follow-up for 1 year. Baseline BCVA and CRT were 68.1 ± 13.2 letters and 424 ± 135 µm, retrospectively. After 1 year, there was a significant mean gain in BCVA of +5.8 ± 7.4 letters (paired t test: p < 0.0001) and a significant decrease in mean CRT of -117 ± 134 µm (paired t test: p < 0.0001). The mean number of anti-VEGF injections was 10.0 ± 1.6 (range 6-12). The mean maximum interval between injections was 8.5 ± 2.9 weeks (range 4-14) and the mean interval 6.0 ± 1.2 weeks (range 4.1-8.9). 96% of eyes could be extended after a mean of 5.3 injections and 17% of patients could be extended before reaching a formal loading dose of 3 injections. Subgroup analysis did not reveal any differences in outcomes between patients treated with ranibizumab or aflibercept. Subretinal fluid at baseline was associated with better BCVA gain after 1 year (stepwise forward regression analysis, p = 0.003). CONCLUSION: Our results suggest that not all patients with DME require a fixed loading phase when initiating anti-VEGF treatment. Finding anatomical predictors to identify this subgroup of patients would help to reduce treatment burden and optimize clinical outcomes.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Head Organs and Neurology (DKNS) > Clinic of Ophthalmology

UniBE Contributor:

Ebneter, Andreas; Munk, Marion; Wolf, Sebastian and Zinkernagel, Martin

Subjects:

600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health
500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology

ISSN:

0030-3755

Publisher:

Karger

Language:

English

Submitter:

Andreas Ebneter

Date Deposited:

04 Nov 2019 09:49

Last Modified:

04 Nov 2019 09:49

Publisher DOI:

10.1159/000495623

PubMed ID:

30654365

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/134277

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