Scientific Reports
March 2024

Initial response and 12-month outcomes after commencing dexamethasone or vascular endothelial growth factor inhibitors for retinal vein occlusion in the FRB registry

Gonzaga Garay-Aramburu, Adrian Hunt, Carolina Arruabarrena, Hemal Mehta, Alessandro Invernizzi, Pierre-Henry Gabrielle, Tremeur Guillaumie, Benjamin Wolff, Mark C Gillies, Javier Zarranz-Ventura


To compare baseline characteristics, initial response and 12-month efficacy and safety outcomes in eyes with branch and central retinal vein occlusion (BRVO and CRVO) treated with dexamethasone implants (DEX) or anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF) we performed a multi-centre, retrospective and observational study using Fight Retinal Blindness! Registry. Of 725 eligible eyes, 10% received DEX initially with very frequent adjunctive anti-VEGF (BRVO-DEX 49%, CRVO-DEX 60%). The primary outcome of mean adjusted change in VA at 12 months with DEX and anti-VEGF initiated groups were not statistically significantly different (BRVO: DEX + 6.7, anti-VEGF + 10.6 letters; CRVO: DEX + 2.8, anti-VEGF + 6.8 letters). DEX initiated eyes had fewer injections and visits than anti-VEGF initiated eyes. The BRVO-DEX eyes had greater initial mean changes in VA and central subfield thickness (CST) and achieved inactivity sooner than BRVO-anti-VEGF eyes. The mean CST after the first three months was above 350 μm in all but the BRVO-anti-VEGF group, suggesting undertreatment. In routine care DEX is uncommonly used when available as initial treatment of BRVO and CRVO requiring supplemental anti-VEGF within the first year. The 12-month outcomes were similar, but DEX initiated eyes had fewer injections and visits but more episodes of raised IOP Vs those starting anti-VEGF.