OCT 31, 2013
By Mark S. Blumenkranz, MD; Frederick L. Ferris III, MD
Comprehensive Ophthalmology, Retina/Vitreous
In this interview, Dr. Frederick Ferris shares his experiences in the Diabetic Research Study (DRS) and how that landmark clinical trial catapulted the multiple arms and subgroups he directed in the Early Treatment Diabetic Research Study (ETDRS). The ETDRS answered many questions about not only treatment protocols for diabetic retinopathy, says Dr. Ferris, but also the natural history of the disease. The impact of the findings substantiate the continued role of laser therapy, as 20-year follow-up data confirm the durability and effectiveness of photocoagulation for proliferative disease. Dr. Ferris expects future randomized trials to further define the role of laser in the management of diabetic retinopathy, especially as anti-VEGF agents and combination therapies are investigated for both proliferative and nonproliferative disease.