Creation of a neovascular age-related macular degeneration national database using a web-based platform: Fight Retinal Blindness Spain. Report 1: Visual outcomes
Background: To study the visual outcomes of neovascular AMD (nAMD) treated with anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) drugs at national level.
Methods: Multicenter national database of nAMD eyes treated with anti-VEGF intravitreal injections (ranibizumab, aflibercept, bevacizumab) in fixed bimonthly (FB) or treat-and-extend (TAE) regimens. Demographics, visual acuity (VA) in logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution (logMAR) ETDRS letters at baseline and subsequent visits, number of injections and visits data were collected using a validated web-based tool (Fight Retinal Blindness!).
Results: 1273 eyes (1014 patients) were included, 971 treatment naïve (TN) and 302 previously treated (PT). Baseline VA (mean ± SD) was 57.5 (±19.5) and 62.2 (±17) (p > 0.001), and 24 months final VA was 60.4 (±21.2) and 58.8 (±21.1) (p = 0.326), respectively. Mean VA change at 12/24 months was +4.2/+2.9 letters in TN eyes and +0.1/-3.4 letters in PT eyes (p < 0.001/p < 0.001). The percentage of ≥15 letters gainers/losers at 24 months was 24.8%/14.5% in TN, and 10.3%/15.7% in PT eyes. The median number of injections/visits at 12 months was 7/9 in TN and 6/8 in PT (p = 0.002/p < 0.001) and at 24 months was 11/16 in TN and 11/14 in PT (p = 0.329/p < 0.001). Study drugs included ranibizumab (39.5%), aflibercept (41.2%) and bevacizumab (19.3%). Conclusion: Independent, large-scale national audits are feasible if committed health care professionals are provided with efficient information technology systems to do them. The results described here represent an adequate measurement of the quality of care delivered nationwide and benchmark the clinical management of nAMD at a country level compared to other real-world international cohorts.