Adjunctive daunorubicin in the treatment of proliferative vitreoretinopathy: results of a multicenter clinical trial. Daunomycin Study Group

Am J Ophthalmol. 1998 Oct;126(4):550-9. doi: 10.1016/s0002-9394(98)00115-9.


Purpose: To assess the efficacy and safety of adjunctive daunorubicin during vitrectomy surgery in eyes with idiopathic proliferative vitreoretinopathy (PVR).

Methods: Two hundred eighty-six eyes (286 patients) with stage C2 (Retina Society Classification, 1983) or more advanced preoperative PVR in which surgery with silicone oil was planned were enrolled in a multicenter, prospective, randomized, controlled clinical trial. Standardized surgery plus adjunctive daunorubicin perfusion was compared with surgery alone. Outcomes assessed were retinal attachment without additional vitreoretinal surgery 6 months after standardized surgery, number of and time until vitreoretinal reoperations within 1 year of standardized surgery, and change in visual acuity 1 year after standardized surgery, evaluated by photodocumentation, number of reoperations, and measurement of best-corrected visual function. Outcomes were determined 6 months after operation and reevaluated after 1 year of follow-up.

Results: Six months after standardized surgery, complete retinal reattachment without additional vitreoretinal surgery was achieved in 62.7% (89/142) of eyes in the daunorubicin group vs 54.1% (73/135) in the control group (P = .07, one-sided). However, in the daunorubicin group, significantly fewer vitreoretinal reoperations were performed within 1 year postoperatively (P = .005, one-sided) to achieve the same overall 1-year retinal reattachment rate (80.2% [105/131] vs 81.8% [103/126]). The rate of patients with no vitreoretinal reoperations was 65.5% (95/145) in the daunorubicin group vs 53.9% (76/141) in the control group. There was no difference in the best-corrected visual acuity. No severe adverse effect related to daunorubicin was identified.

Conclusions: Although the rate of anatomic success after 6 months failed to show significance, some benefit of the adjunctive treatment exists, especially a tendency toward increased rate of reattachment and a significant reduction in the number of reoperations. This shows that human PVR is amenable to pharmacologic treatment.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic / therapeutic use*
  • Chemotherapy, Adjuvant
  • Daunorubicin / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Safety
  • Scleral Buckling
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Visual Acuity
  • Vitrectomy*
  • Vitreoretinopathy, Proliferative / drug therapy*
  • Vitreoretinopathy, Proliferative / pathology
  • Vitreoretinopathy, Proliferative / surgery


  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic
  • Daunorubicin