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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 64

of 'Diabetic retinopathy: Prevention and treatment'

Influence of preoperative intravitreal bevacizumab on visual function in eyes with proliferative diabetic retinopathy.
Ushida H, Kachi S, Asami T, Ishikawa K, Kondo M, Terasaki H
Ophthalmic Res. 2013;49(1):30-6. Epub 2012 Sep 29.
PURPOSE: Although bevacizumab, a humanized monoclonal antibody against vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), is effective in treating ocular neovascularization, there are some concerns about whether blocking VEGF might be harmful to retinal neurons. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of preoperative intravitreal bevacizumab (IVB) on the visual function of eyes with proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR).
METHODS: Thirty eyes of 23 patients (13 men and 10 women) with PDR who were treated at the Nagoya University Hospital from November 2006 to October 2009 were studied. All of the eyes were treated with 1.25 mg/0.05 ml of IVB 2-8 days before the vitrectomy. The protocol was approved by the Institutional Review Board of Nagoya University, and a written informed consent was obtained from each patient. All of the eyes had an active proliferative membrane with vitreous hemorrhage, but the fundus was visible. The mean age of the patients was 41.6±10 years (range, 27-59), and the mean follow-up period was 9.7±8.9 months (range, 1-24) after the vitrectomy. The visual acuity (VA) was measured, the visual fields were determined by Goldmann perimetery, and full-field electroretinograms (ERGs)were recorded before IVB, and before and after the vitrectomy. Fluorescein angiography was also performed before and after IVB. The area of the visual field was measured using a computer software (Scion Image).
RESULTS: All eyes showed a regression of the new vessels and a reduction of fluorescent leakage from the new vessels after IVB. In addition, there was less bleeding during the removal of the proliferative membrane. The average VA was improved postoperatively from 20/250 to 20/70. However, there was no significant change in the amplitudes of the a- (from 261.4 to 259.2µV) and b-waves (from 256.9 to 253.3µV) of the ERGs, and there was no significant change in the visual field area after the surgery (from 8,322.5 to 7,496.3 degrees(2)). No significant ocular or systemic adverse events were observed.
CONCLUSION: IVB-assisted vitrectomy led to an improvement of the VA in eyes with PDR without significant adverse events. There was no change in the visual fields and ERGs. Although only a small number of patients were studied, we conclude that IVB is most likely not harmful to retinal neurons if bevacizumab is washed out in less than 1 week. In addition, preoperative IVB made the surgery much easier by decreasing the activity of new vessels.
Department of Ophthalmology, Nagoya University Graduate School of Medicine, Nagoya, Japan.