Korean J Ophthalmol.  2019 Jun;33(3):272-278. 10.3341/kjo.2019.0011.

Refractive Outcomes of 4-Year-old Children after Intravitreal Anti-vascular Endothelial Growth Factor versus Laser Photocoagulation for Retinopathy of Prematurity

  • 1Department of Ophthalmology, Institute of Vision Research, Gangnam Severance Hospital, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Ophthalmology, Institute of Vision Research, Severance Hospital, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. shhan222@yuhs.ac


To compare long-term refractive outcomes associated with intravitreal anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) versus laser photocoagulation treatment for retinopathy of prematurity (ROP).
A total of 52 eyes from 27 ROP patients treated at two tertiary referral-based hospitals from August 2006 to December 2013 were reviewed. The primary outcome was refractive error measured at the age of 4 years, accounting for within-patient inter-eye correlation. Secondary outcomes included the recurrence rate and treatment complications.
The mean age at refraction was 4.7 ± 0.3 years in the laser group (n = 30) and 4.4 ± 0.3 years in the anti-VEGF group (n = 22). No significant differences were noted in gestational age, birthweight, post-menstrual age at treatment, or ROP stage/zone distribution between groups. Mean spherical equivalent was also not significantly different (−1.0 diopters in the laser group and −0.3 diopters in the injection group, p = 0.603). Clustered regression analysis revealed that only gestational age was significantly correlated with mean spherical equivalent (p < 0.001; 95% confidence interval, −0.007 to −0.002). Recurrence was noted in four eyes (13.3%) in the laser group, but this difference was not significant (p = 0.128). There were no major systemic complications reported in either group.
Treatment type, whether laser or anti-VEGF injection, does not appear to influence long-term refractive outcomes in ROP. Concern regarding refractive outcomes should not be the most important factor when selecting ROP treatment modality.


Intravitreal injections; Laser therapy; Refractive errors; Retinopathy of prematurity; Vascular endothelial growth factor A

MeSH Terms

Child, Preschool*
Endothelial Growth Factors*
Gestational Age
Intravitreal Injections
Laser Therapy
Light Coagulation*
Refractive Errors
Retinopathy of Prematurity*
Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
Endothelial Growth Factors
Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
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