Intravitreal Avastin® (bevacizumab) for Diffuse DME: The Pan-American Collaborative Retina Study Group at 24 Months

July 2, 2009

Researchers in the Pan-American Collaborative Retina Study Group reported the results of a 24 months study of the effect of intravitreal Avastin® (bevacizumab, Genentech, Inc., San Francisco, CA) on BCVA and central macular thickness in patients with diffuse diabetic macular edema in an article published online in the journal Ophthalmology.

This was a retrospective, multicenter, interventional, comparative case series in which the charts from 139 eyes in 115 patients were reviewed. Each patient received at least one bevacizumab injection of either 1.25 or 2.5 mg. The mean number of injections per eye was 5.8. In the group that received 1.25 mg the mean BCVA at 24 months was 20/75; the mean BCVA at 24 months was 20/114 for the 2.5 mg group.  In the 1.25-mg group, the mean central macular thickness decreased from 466.5±145.2 µm at baseline to 286.6±81.5 µm at 24 months (P<0.0001). Similar results were obtained in the 2.5-mg group.

The researchers note that there were little evident differences in results between the two dosage groups.

These results are encouraging however, as this was not a randomized controlled study, it will be very important to see some results from those type trials. Since there has been bad news for the use of Kenalog in these patients recently, any positive results in the treatment of diabetic macular edema are welcome.

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