OCT 12, 2018
This retrospective study determines the number of patients with neovascular AMD who are lost to follow-up after receiving intravitreal anti–VEGF injections.
Investigators included 9,007 patients from a single large academic private practice who received anti-VEGF injections for wet AMD. Loss to follow-up was defined as receipt of 1 or more injections with no follow-up visit for at least 12 months after the final injection. Patients who were lost to follow-up were analyzed to determine associated factors.
The loss to follow-up rate was 22.2%. Patients were most likely to be lost to follow-up if they were older than 80 years old; of African-American, Asian or undisclosed descent; had a regional adjusted annual income of $50,000 or less; lived far from an ophthalmology clinic or received unilateral injections.
This is a retrospective study from a single regional area, with demographics that may not be globally applicable. Loss to follow-up was defined as 12 months or more, which may underestimate the true rate of loss to follow-up and influence the risk factor analysis.
The loss to follow-up among wet AMD patients who receive anti-VEGF injections can be significant. Given the poor visual outcomes associated with undertreatment of this condition, clinicians should be careful to note potential risk factors that may increase a patient’s chances of being lost to follow-up.