Missing a single appointment linked to drop in VA among AMD patients

A new study has highlighted that each missed visit is associated with an average visual acuity letter score decline of 0.7

New research published in JAMA Ophthalmology has highlighted that patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) who miss a single visit could be risking a drop in visual acuity.

Over a two-year period, researchers observed the attendance rates of 1178 AMD patients from 44 different clinical centres. Patients were required to attend 26 visits over the period, or one appointment every 30 days.

The scientists found that patients who had the highest attendance levels also had the best visual outcomes.

Each missed visit was linked with an average visual acuity letter score decline of 0.7.

Compared with those patients who attended appointments within 30 days, those patients who averaged 36 to 60 days between appointments lost 6.1 letters.

Patients who averaged more than 60 days between appointments lost 12.5 letters.

The authors highlighted: “The magnitude of the association of visit adherence with visual acuity outcomes in this clinical scenario suggests that substantial effort should be expended to strive for visit adherence or therapeutic strategies that reduce the visit burden without compromising visual acuity outcomes.”

Image credit: Pixabay/Sabine van Erp