Aflibercept or ranibizumab for the treatment of diabetic macular edema; a retrospective study
Diabetic macular edema (DME) is a significant cause of diabetic retinopathy and a major cause of vision loss. In this study, we aimed to evaluate and compare the efficacy of two injectable drugs; intravitreal Aflibercept and intravitreal Ranibizumab for the treatment of DME of the eyes. A retrospective chart review was conducted for patients diagnosed with DME from March 2014 to January 2019 who received either intravitreal Aflibercept or intravitreal Ranibizumab injection. A total of 57 eyes were included, of which 19 eyes were treated with intravitreal Ranibizumab injection, and 38 eyes were treated with intravitreal Aflibercept injection; all eyes were examined for 3 months. Two outcomes were assessed in this study, namely; visual acuity (VA) and central macular thickness (CMT). The mean age in the Ranibizumab group was 61.1±9.5 vs 64.3±10.2 in the Aflibercept group with no significant difference (p-value=0.25). The ratio of improvement in visual acuity (VA) in the Ranibizumab group was 68.4% vs 44.7% in the Aflibercept group; (p-value=0.038) which demonstrates the superiority of Ranibizumab over Aflibercept concerning visual acuity result. However, there is no statistically significant difference between the ratio of improvement in central macular thickness (CMT) results in both groups; (p-value=1.00). In fact, the ratio of improvement in CMT in both groups was the same 78.9% for both the groups. The pre and post results demonstrated improvement in post-procedural for CMT among both the groups but only Ranibizumab group showed VA improvement post-procedural. Through this study, we concluded that both injectable drugs improve visual acuity (VA) and decrease central macular thickness (CMT) in eyes with DME. However, Ranibizumab is superior in improving visual acuity compared to Aflibercept. Further comparative effectiveness trials between Aflibercept and Ranibizumab are still warranted.
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