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Purpose: Intravitreal aflibercept, a fusion protein with high affinity for vascular endothelial growth factor, offers an alternative treatment for exudative age-related macular degeneration. Preclinical studies and early and late phase clinical trials suggest that aflibercept's high binding affinity may impart greater durability of activity and increased efficacy compared to ranibizumab or bevacizumab.Methods: A total of 266 eyes of 249 patients with exudative age-related macular degeneration who received aflibercept after treatment with bevacizumab and/or ranibizumab were included in a retrospective review. Mean central subfoveal thickness on spectral-domain optical coherence tomography and mean logarithm of the minimal angle of resolution (logMAR) visual acuity were calculated at 1, 3, 6, and 12 months after the first aflibercept injection. Subgroup analyses were performed in eyes receiving at least 5 bevacizumab and/or ranibizumab injections in the 6 months prior to aflibercept and in eyes receiving at least 10 injections in the 12 months prior to aflibercept.Results: Eyes received an average of 14.7 (range 1-43) ranibizumab and/or bevacizumab treatments prior to initiation of aflibercept therapy. The mean central subfoveal thickness decreased from 300 to 275 µm at 1 month (p<0.001) and was maintained at 6 months. Mean logMAR visual acuity improved from 0.60 (Snellen equivalent 20/80) to 0.54 (20/70, p = 0.01) at 1 month and was stable at 0.55 at 6 months (Snellen equivalent 20/70, p = 0.11, n = 251). In 82 eyes receiving at least 5 injections in the 6 months prior to aflibercept treatment (average of 18.1 injections total), the central subfoveal thickness improved from 296 to 279 µm at 1 month (p<0.0001) and was maintained at 6 months (p<0.0001). Visual acuity did not change (0.48 [20/61] at 1 month compared to baseline, 0.49 [20/62], p = 0.634, and at 6 months 0.51 [20/65], p = 0.601). In 50 eyes receiving at least 10 injections in the 12 months prior to aflibercept treatment (average of 21.8 injections total), the mean central subfoveal thickness decreased by 17 µm at 1 month (p = 0.0007) and was maintained at 6 months (p = 0.013). Again, visual acuity did not change (0.46 [20/56] at 1 month, baseline 0.44 [20/56], p = 0.547, and 0.50 [20/63] at 6 months, p = 0.2445).Conclusions: Aflibercept is a valuable treatment alternative in patients previously treated with bevacizumab and/or ranibizumab injections. Stability of visual acuity and anatomic improvement on spectral-domain optical coherence tomography were observed after initiation of aflibercept treatment in those preciously treated with ranibizumab and/or bevacizumab injections every 4-6 weeks.
PMID: 24706352 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]