Purpose: To evaluate the effect of intraocular pressure-lowering medications on treatment outcomes in the Comparison of AMD Treatments Trials.
Methods: Secondary analysis of Comparison of AMD Treatments Trials data. Medication logs were reviewed for continuous 2-year use of agents that increased aqueous outflow (Group A: topical prostaglandins) or suppressed aqueous production (Group B: topical beta blockers and carbonic anhydrase inhibitors). Eyes were excluded if mixed-mechanism intraocular pressure-lowering agents or medications from more than one group were taken. Anatomical and vision responses to treatment at years 1, 2, and over the entire 2-year period in each group were compared with controls (no intraocular pressure-lowering medications).
Results: Inclusion criteria were met by 28 Group A patients, 19 Group B patients, and 857 controls. After 2 years, the control group had a mean visual acuity improvement of +6.3 letters from baseline, compared with +3.5 letters in Group A (P = 0.38), and +13.8 letters in Group B (P = 0.052). Mean retinal thickness change from baseline was -54.9 μm in controls, -80.6 μm in Group A (P = 0.26), and -96.8 μm in Group B (P = 0.13). Mean total thickness change from baseline was -163 μm in controls, -180 μm in Group A (P = 0.63), and -238 μm in Group B (P = 0.08). In longitudinal analysis with adjustment by their baseline values, anti-vascular endothelial growth factor treatment drug and regimen, Group B had more visual acuity improvement (difference of 2.6 letters, 95% confidence interval: -3.4-8.5 letters), more reduction in the retinal thickness (-17.9 μm, 95% confidence interval: -36.5 to 0.7 μm), and total thickness from baseline (mean difference of -54.7 μm, 95% confidence interval: -103 to 6.2 μm) compared with the control group.
Conclusion: Concurrent aqueous suppressant use during anti-vascular endothelial growth factor therapy for neovascular age-related macular degeneration was associated with a trend toward greater reductions in retinal and total thickness as well as improved visual outcomes over 2 years. A similar effect was not observed to the same extent with agents that increase aqueous outflow. Because of the small sample size and secondary analysis, these findings must be cautiously interpreted and perhaps serve as a basis for future prospective studies.
Conflict of interest statement
Conflicts of Interest Disclosures: The authors do not have a proprietary interest in the presented material.
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