Introduction: The increasing high prevalence of neovascular age-related macular degeneration (nvAMD) in the aging population combined with the need for frequent monitoring and treatment for many years, especially in the COVID-19 era, raises the need to establish an effective, reliable, and safe follow-up and treatment model. This study evaluates the difference in treatment decisions comparing between the gold standard face-to-face clinical examination and virtual evaluation approach based only on visual acuity (VA) and optical coherence tomography (OCT) scans without clinical fundoscopic examination in nvAMD patients. Methods: A single-center retrospective cohort study was conducted that compared an original "face-to-face"visit treatment decision regarding the need for anti-vascular endothelial growth factor drug, interval, and treatment regimen based on routine VA, spectral domain OCT imaging, and dilated fundus examination to two "virtual"treatment decisions based on evaluation of OCT scans and previous medical records before and after revealing VA data on the same nvAMD patients eyes. Results: About 169 eyes of 114 patients were included in the study. Forty-nine patients (43%) suffered from bilateral nvAMD and had both eyes included in the study. Agreement between the "face-to-face visit treatment decision"and "virtual treatment decision"was noted in 74.6% and 71.6% eyes before and after revealing the patient's VA in the study visit, respectively. Conclusions: Virtual evaluation results in similar treatment decisions for nvAMD patients compared to standard face-to-face clinical examination.
- Age-related macular degeneration
- Optical coherence tomography
- Virtual evaluation