• This prospective, multicenter study found that maintenance therapy with pegaptanib is potentially an effective and well-tolerated option in patients with wet AMD in whom induction therapy has been successful.

    Subjects were 60 Japanese wet AMD patients with choroidal neovascularization who showed improvement in visual acuity with induction therapy and were scheduled for intravitreal injections of pegaptanib as maintenance therapy. They had a mean age of 74.7 years.

    Pegaptanib 0.3 mg was administered by intravitreal injection every six weeks for 48 weeks, with follow-up to 54 weeks. Patients received booster treatment if needed.

    The mean number of pegaptanib injections over the 54-week study period was 5.7. From before induction to week 54, 41 percent of patients had at least a 15-letter improvement in visual acuity. During maintenance, mean central point thickness was relatively stable. About half of the patients did not require booster treatment.

    Pegaptanib was well-tolerated, and there were almost no ocular or systemic adverse events. IOP remained stable from the start to completion of treatment.

    The authors note that results of this type of study do not demonstrate a causal response to the treatment given. For more definitive evidence, a larger-scale comparative study needs to be conducted.