Objective: To determine the efficacy of sustained topical therapy with dorzolamide hydrochloride, 2%, on visual acuity and cystic macular lesions in patients with retinitis pigmentosa and Usher syndrome.
Methods: In a retrospective case series at a university hospital, 64 eyes of 32 patients with retinitis pigmentosa or Usher syndrome receiving treatment with the topical dorzolamide formulation for 6 to 58 months were enrolled. Changes in visual acuity on the Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study chart and central foveal zone thickness on optical coherence tomography were measured during follow-up for the duration of treatment.
Results: Among the study cohort, 20 of 32 patients (63%) showed a positive response to treatment in at least 1 eye and 13 patients (41%) showed a positive response in both eyes. Four patients (20%) showed an initial response and a subsequent rebound of macular cysts. In 8 patients (25%), there was no response to treatment and the macular cysts worsened when compared with the pretreatment level. Ten patients (31%) had improvement in visual acuity by 7 or more letters in at least 1 eye at the most recent follow-up visit. Sixteen patients (67%) showed a reduction of more than 11% in the central foveal zone thickness in at least 1 eye when compared with the pretreatment level.
Conclusions: Patients with either retinitis pigmentosa or Usher syndrome who received treatment of cystoid macular edema with topical dorzolamide followed by an optical coherence tomography-guided strategy showed a decrease in central foveal zone thickness in most cases. Visual acuity improved in almost one-third of the cases, suggesting a potential corresponding visual benefit.