Intravitreal ranibizumab (Lucentis) for the treatment of myopic choroidal neovascularization

Lazaros Konstantinidis, Irmela Mantel, Jean-Antoine C Pournaras, Leonidas Zografos, Aude Ambresin
Graefe's Archive for Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology 2009, 247 (3): 311-8

BACKGROUND: Macular choroidal neovascularization (CNV) is one of the most vision-threatening complications of myopia, which can lead to severe vision loss. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of intravitreal ranibizumab in the treatment of myopic CNV.

METHODS: We conducted a prospective, consecutive, interventional study of patients with subfoveal or juxtafoveal CNV secondary to pathologic myopia (PM) treated with intravitreal injection of ranibizumab in the Jules Gonin University Eye Hospital from June 2006 to February 2008. Best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA), optical coherence tomography (OCT), and fluorescein angiography (FA) were performed at baseline and monthly for all patients. Indications for retreatment were loss in BCVA associated either with persistent leakage from CNV shown on FA, and/or evidence of CNV activity on OCT.

RESULTS: The study included 14 eyes of 14 patients. The mean spherical equivalent refractive error was -12.5 (range, -8.0 D to -16.0 D). Mean time of follow-up was 8.4 months (range from 3 to 16 months, SD: 3). The mean number of intravitreal injections administered for each patient was 2.36 (SD 1.5). The mean initial visual acuity (VA) was 0.19 decimal equivalent (log-MAR: 0.71, SD: 0.3). A statistically significant improvement to a mean VA of 0.48 decimal equivalent (log-MAR:0.32, SD: 0.25) was demonstrated at the final follow-up. VA improved by a mean of 3.86 (SD 2.74) lines. Nine patients (64%) demonstrated a gain of 3 or more lines. Mean central macular thickness (CMT) measured with OCT was 304 microm (SD: 39) at the baseline, and was reduced significantly at the final follow-up to 153 microm (SD: 23). Average CMT reduction was 170 microm (SD: 57). No injection complications or drug-related side effects were noted during the follow-up period.

CONCLUSIONS: In this small series of eyes with limited follow-up, intravitreal ranibizumab was a safe and effective treatment for CNV secondary to PM, resulting in functional and anatomic improvements.

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