Reactivation of retinopathy of prematurity after bevacizumab injection

Arch Ophthalmol. 2012 Aug;130(8):1000-6. doi: 10.1001/archophthalmol.2012.592.


Objective: To report late reactivation and progression of retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) after intravitreal bevacizumab monotherapy.

Methods: Retrospective review of 9 patients (17 eyes) with recurrence of ROP after initial treatment with intravitreal bevacizumab monotherapy. Data collected included (1) location and stage of ROP activity, (2) number and timing of treatments, and (3) structural outcomes.

Results: Mean age at treatment-requiring recurrence was 49.3 weeks (SD, 9.1 weeks; minimum, 37 weeks; maximum, 69 weeks) postmenstrual age (PMA). The mean time between initial treatment and treatment-requiring recurrence was 14.4 weeks, with a minimum of 4 and maximum of 35 weeks. Fives eyes progressed to retinal detachment (4 eyes stage 5, 1 eye stage 4a). Age at retinal detachment ranged from 49 to 69 weeks PMA with a median of 55 weeks PMA and mean of 58.4 weeks PMA. No eye that received laser treatment for recurrence progressed to retinal detachment.

Conclusions: Although intravitreal bevacizumab treatment is effective in inducing regression of ROP, the effect may be transient. Recurrence can occur later in the course than with conventional laser therapy. Late retinal detachment can occur despite early regression. Longterm favorable structural outcome may require extended observation and retreatment. Laser may be a useful treatment for recurrences.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / administration & dosage*
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized / administration & dosage*
  • Bevacizumab
  • Child
  • Disease Progression
  • Fluorescein Angiography
  • Gestational Age
  • Humans
  • Infant, Extremely Low Birth Weight
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Intravitreal Injections
  • Laser Coagulation
  • Recurrence
  • Retinal Detachment / diagnosis
  • Retinal Detachment / physiopathology
  • Retinal Detachment / surgery
  • Retinal Vessels / pathology
  • Retinopathy of Prematurity / diagnosis*
  • Retinopathy of Prematurity / drug therapy*
  • Retinopathy of Prematurity / physiopathology
  • Retinopathy of Prematurity / surgery
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Time Factors
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Visual Acuity / physiology


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