National survey of the ophthalmic use of anti-vascular endothelial growth factor drugs in Israel

Michael Waisbourd*, Michaella Goldstein, Anat Loewenstein

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Intravitreal injections of the anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) drugs bevacizumab (Avastin®) and ranibizumab (Lucentis®) became the mainstay of treatment for various retinal pathologies, but there is no consensus among ophthalmologists on the precise use of these drugs. Objectives: To describe the routine practices of retinal specialists in Israel regarding anti-VEGF drug treatment. Methods: A questionnaire was sent via email to all 62 members of the Israeli Society of Retinal Specialists. The survey included 34 questions on various aspects of the use of anti-VEGF drugs: diagnosis, treatment, follow-up of different retinal pathologies, and the measures taken for ensuring sterile administration of the intravitreal injections. results: Fifty members (80%) completed the survey. Most of them (56%) offered both bevacizumab and ranibizumab to their patients for age-related macular degeneration, but 70% were infuenced by the patient's socioeconomic status. Three consecutive monthly injections were usually recommended (58%) for the first 3 months, and treatment was extended as long as subretinal or intraretinal fluids persisted (57%). Over two-thirds (68%) switched the drugs after the 3-monthly series if the first one yielded no improvement in fluid status. The routine practice for intravitreal injection (> 80%) involved the wearing of sterile gloves, using an eyelid speculum, and administering povidone-iodine pretreatment and topical antibiotics after treatment. Conclusions: Intravitreal VEGF administration varies widely among Israeli retinal specialists. The current survey is intended to assist Israeli ophthalmologists in establishing their own treatment strategy for patients with retinal pathologies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-146
Number of pages6
JournalIsrael Medical Association Journal
Volume13
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2011

Keywords

  • Anti-vascular endothelial growth factor
  • Bevacizumab
  • Guidelines
  • National survey
  • Ranibizumab

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