Watch and wait: research favours observation for macular oedema patients with good visual acuity

A new study suggests that observation should be the preferred approach for patients with centre-involved diabetic macular oedema and good vision

Man with a walking stick

A new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association has compared different forms of management for patients with good visual acuity and diabetic macular oedema involving the macular centre.

The research found that there was no significant difference in the proportion of patients who experienced a five letter decrease in visual acuity at two years between those managed through aflibercept, laser photocoagulation and observation.

The authors concluded: “Observation without treatment unless visual acuity worsens may be a reasonable strategy for these eyes.”

The study involved 702 diabetic macular oedema patients with 6/7.5 visual acuity or better.

Study investigator, Dr Carl Baker, from the Paducah Retinal Centre, highlighted: “We now know that in patients with good vision and diabetic macular oedema, similar to those enrolled in this trial, it’s an acceptable strategy to closely monitor patients, and initiate treatment only if their vision starts to show signs of decline.”

Image credit: Pixabay