2015 June

Two-year outcomes of “treat and extend” intravitreal therapy for neovascular age-related macular degeneration

Jennifer J Arnold, Anna Campain, Daniel Barthelmes, Judy M Simpson, Robyn H Guymer, Alex P Hunyor, Ian L McAllister, Rohan W Essex, Nigel Morlet, Mark C Gillies, Fight Retinal Blindness Study Group


Purpose: To report 24-month outcomes of anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) therapy for treatment-naïve eyes with neovascular age-related macular degeneration (nAMD) using a treat and extend treatment regimen in routine clinical practice.

Design: Database observational study.

Participants: We included treatment-naïve eyes receiving predominantly ranibizumab for nAMD in routine clinical practice treated using a treat and extend regimen that were tracked in the Fight Retinal Blindness observational registry.

Methods: A cohort of eyes treated by practitioners using exclusively a treat and extend regimen was extracted from the Fight Retinal Blindness observational registry.

Main outcome measures: Change in visual acuity (VA) over 2 years and number of injections and visits.

Results: Data from 1198 eyes from 1011 patients receiving anti-VEGF therapy using a treat and extend regimen for treatment-naïve nAMD between January 2007 and December 2012 and with 24-month follow-up were included in the analysis. Mean VA increased by +5.3 logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution letters from 56.5 letters (20/80+1) at initial visit to 61.8 (20/60+2) letters at 24 months. Mean VA gains improved and number of injections increased with successive years from +2.7 letters for eyes commencing in 2007 after a mean of 9.7 injections in 2 years, to +7.8 letters for eyes commencing in 2012 after a mean of 14.2 injections over 2 years. The proportion of eyes with VA >20/40 increased from 27% when starting treatment to 45% after 24 months; the proportion with vision of <20/200 remained unchanged (13% initial, 11% at 24 months). Of the included eyes, 90.5% avoided a vision loss of ≥15 letters. There was an overall mean of 13.0 injections over the 24 months, 7.5 injections in the first year and 5.5 in the second year, with a mean of 14.8 clinic visits. Conclusions: These data indicate that eyes managed in routine clinical practice with a treat and extend regimen can achieve good visual outcomes while decreasing the burden of treatments and clinic visits.