This research was part of the Standard Care vs. Corticosteroid for Retinal Vein Occlusion (SCORE) Study, a phase III clinical trial conducted at 84 sites and supported by the National Eye Institute (NEI) at the National Institutes of Health.
"The SCORE study is the first to demonstrate that laser treatment and injections of corticosteroid into the eye have a similar impact on vision loss for patients who have retinal swelling due to branch retinal vein occlusion," said Ingrid U. Scott, M.D., M.P.H., professor at Penn State College of Medicine and co-chair of the SCORE study. "However, the lower rate of complications with laser treatment may indicate that it is the best proven treatment option for patients at this time, and that laser represents the benchmark against which other treatments should be compared in future clinical trials."
In the United States, vein occlusion is estimated to be the second most common condition affecting blood vessels in the retina. In BRVO, a blood clot slows or stops circulation in a small vein within the eye's light-sensitive retinal tissue. This may lead to new blood vessel growth and blood vessel leakage, which results in retinal tissue swelling—a common cause of vision loss from BRVO.
Eye doctors typically treat BRVO with laser therapy applied to the affected retina in a grid pattern. However, some ophthalmologists have treated people who have BRVO using eye injections of an anti-inflammatory corticosteroid called triamcinolone. Because clinical observations suggested a visual benefit, the SCORE study was initiated to compare the safety and effectiveness of standard care laser treatment with two different doses of triamcinolone—1 milligram and 4 milligrams. The results appear in the September 2009 issue of Archives of Ophthalmology, published alongside findings from a separate trial within the SCORE study, which looked at blockages in larger retinal veins.
Participants in the study included 411 people with BRVO who were an average of 67 years old. Patients could receive treatment every four months for up to three years. One year after patients began the trial, equal numbers of patients experienced visual improvement in each treatment group. Twenty to 30 percent of patients in each group experienced substantial visual gains of three or more lines on a vision chart—equivalent to identifying letters that were half as small as they could read before treatment.
However, patients who received either dosage of corticosteroid medication were more likely to develop a cataract or have an increase in eye pressure requiring medication than patients who received laser treatment. Between one and two years after treatment was begun, patients who received the 4 milligram dosage were also more likely to undergo cataract surgery.
"These results may have a significant public health impact by providing guidance for clinicians and patients in their selection of a branch retinal vein occlusion treatment," said Frederick L. Ferris III, M.D., clinical director of the NEI. "Still, better treatments for this condition are needed. This information could guide future clinical trials of new and more effective treatments for BRVO patients."
The SCORE study was co-chaired by Michael S. Ip, M.D., associate professor at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and Ingrid U. Scott, M.D., M.P.H., professor at Penn State College of Medicine. Find more information about this clinical trial (NCT00105027) at www.clinicaltrials.gov.
The National Eye Institute (NEI), part of the National Institutes of Health, leads the federal government's research on the visual system and eye diseases. NEI supports basic and clinical science programs that result in the development of sight-saving treatments. For more information, visit www.nei.nih.gov.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH)—The Nation's Medical Research Agency—includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.
NEI News Office | EurekAlert!
A promising target for kidney fibrosis
21.04.2017 | Brigham and Women's Hospital
Stem cell transplants: activating signal paths may protect from graft-versus-host disease
20.04.2017 | Technische Universität München
More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.
Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...
Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.
"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...
The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.
Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...
The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...
Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.
Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...
20.04.2017 | Event News
18.04.2017 | Event News
03.04.2017 | Event News
25.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
25.04.2017 | Materials Sciences
25.04.2017 | Life Sciences