Early bevacizumab treatment of central retinal vein occlusion

Am J Ophthalmol. 2007 Dec;144(6):864-71. doi: 10.1016/j.ajo.2007.07.038. Epub 2007 Oct 4.


Purpose: To evaluate the change in visual acuity and retinal appearance in patients after early initiation of intravitreal bevacizumab treatment for central retinal vein occlusion (CRVO).

Design: Retrospective, interventional case series.

Methods: Patients with CRVO of fewer than three months' duration receiving intravitreal bevacizumab as primary treatment were evaluated. Patients received an intravitreal 1.25 mg (0.05 ml) bevacizumab injection. Changes in visual acuity, central macular thickness, venous tortuosity and diameter, and optic disk edema were noted.

Results: Six eyes of five consecutive patients with CRVO treated with intravitreal bevacizumab injection were reviewed retrospectively. The patients did not have other ocular conditions that could have compromised visual acuity. The mean baseline visual acuity was 20/428 (logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution [logMAR] units, 1.33). The mean follow-up period was 12 months (range, seven to 15 months), and the number of bevacizumab injections ranged from four to 10. The patients showed a statistically significant decrease in optic nerve head swelling, venous tortuosity, and venous diameter, with the largest proportion of change occurring within one month of the first bevacizumab injection. The mean visual acuity at last follow-up was 20/53 (logMAR units, 0.42; P = .035, as compared with baseline). In no patient did collateral vessels at the optic nerve head develop.

Conclusions: The patients experienced a dramatic improvement in the visual acuity and clinical fundus appearance, without collateral vessel formation. These findings are difficult to explain with current theories of the pathophysiologic features of CRVO. These findings also suggest early initiation of anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) treatment should be studied in a larger trial for CRVO.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / therapeutic use*
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • Bevacizumab
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Injections
  • Male
  • Retina / pathology
  • Retinal Vein Occlusion / diagnosis
  • Retinal Vein Occlusion / drug therapy*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Visual Acuity / drug effects
  • Vitreous Body


  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • VEGFA protein, human
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
  • Bevacizumab