COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE
RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED TRIAL

Intravitreal bevacizumab (avastin) injection alone or combined with triamcinolone versus macular photocoagulation as primary treatment of diabetic macular edema

Masoud Soheilian, Alireza Ramezani, Bijan Bijanzadeh, Mehdi Yaseri, Hamid Ahmadieh, Mohammad H Dehghan, Mohsen Azarmina, Siamak Moradian, Homa Tabatabaei, Gholam A Peyman
Retina 2007, 27 (9): 1187-95
18046223

PURPOSE: To report the efficacy of a single intravitreal bevacizumab injection alone or in combination with intravitreal triamcinolone acetonide versus macular laser photocoagulation (MPC) as primary treatment of diabetic macular edema (DME).

METHODS: In this randomized, three-arm clinical trial, 103 eyes of 97 patients with clinically significant DME and no previous treatment were enrolled. The eyes were randomly assigned to one of three study arms: the intravitreal bevacizumab (IVB) group, patients who received 1.25 mg of intravitreal bevacizumab (37 eyes); the IVB/IVT group, patients who received 1.25 mg of intravitreal bevacizumab and 2 mg of intravitreal triamcinolone (33 eyes); and the MPC group, patients who underwent focal or modified grid laser (33 eyes). Primary outcome measure was change in visual acuity.

RESULTS: Visual acuity changes +/- SD at 12 weeks were -0.22 +/- 0.23, -0.13 +/- 0.31, and + 0.08 +/- 0.31 logarithm of the minimal angle of resolution in the IVB, IVB/IVT, and MPC groups, respectively. The marginal regression model based on generalized estimating equation analysis demonstrated that the visual acuity changes in the groups were statistically significant at both 6 weeks (P < 0.0001) and 12 weeks (P = 0.024). The significant treatment effect was demonstrated at both 6 weeks and 12 weeks in the IVB group and only at 6 weeks in the IVB/IVT group. Significant central macular thickness (CMT) reduction was observed in eyes in the IVB and IVB/IVT groups only up to 6 weeks; however, CMT changes were not significant in the groups.

CONCLUSION: Up to 12 weeks, intravitreal bevacizumab treatment of patients with DME yielded better visual outcome than laser photocoagulation, although it was not associated with a significant decrease in CMT. No further beneficial effect of intravitreal triamcinolone could be demonstrated. Further clinical trials with longer follow-up are required to evaluate the long-term visual outcomes and complication profiles after primary treatment with such medications.

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