Background: Keratoconjunctivitis sicca occurs in 40% to 90% of patients with ocular chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD). Ocular symptoms can have profound effects in both the visual function and quality of life of patients with GVHD. We report the impact of prosthetic replacement of the ocular surface ecosystem (PROSE) treatment in patients with cGVHD as a clinical network expands.
Methods: We queried the BostonSight PROSE manufacturing database from January 2002 to December 2011. Patients treated for ocular cGVHD were reported by age, gender, year, and network site where the treatment was undertaken. The baseline and six-month follow-up scores of visual function using a standardized validated instrument, the National Eye Institute Visual Function Questionnaire (NEI VFQ-25), were evaluated for a period in 2006 and again in 2010 after network expansion had occurred.
Results: A total of 407 patients with a male:female ratio of 226:181, mean age was 51 years with ocular cGVHD underwent PROSE treatment from January 2002 to December 2011. By 2011, 67% of all cases were treated at network clinics. Baseline characteristics of patients treated throughout the network in 2010 were similar to that of 2006 and 2010 cohorts from the main center. There was a significant improvement of 41 points (P<0.001) in composite NEI VFQ score among patients treated across the network in 2010, similar to the improvement of 30 points (P<0.001) seen among the patients treated at the main center in 2010. There was a trend toward lower baseline self-reported general health status (SRGHS) and VFQ scores among patients treated at network clinics, suggesting that expansion of the network allows treatment of sicker patients (lower general health status) or those more severely affected by ocular cGVHD.
Conclusions: PROSE treatment of ocular cGVHD has increased in the last decade with the establishment of BostonSight network clinics across the United States. Patients treated at network clinics showed similar levels of baseline visual function and SRGHS, and achieved a similar high level of improvement in visual function as those treated at the main center. Patient-reported measures of functional status are useful in evaluating treatment options for patients with cGVHD. PROSE treatment has significant positive impact on the visual function of patients with ocular cGVHD regardless of whether the patient is treated at the main center or at a network site.