Tugrul Altan, Ziya Kapran, Mehmet Cakir, Nur Acar, Yaprak B. Unver, Zerrin Bayraktar


To evaluate the effectiveness of photodynamic therapy with verteporfin in preserving vision at 1 year in eyes with CNVM due to ARMD.


44 eyes of 43 patients who had photodynamic therapy (PDT) with verteporfin for age related macular degeneration between December 2002 and January 2004 were included in the study. 29 (67%) women, 14 (33%) men, mean age was 70,3±6,4. Mean follow-up was 12,9±6,5 months.


Patients with choroidal neovascular membranes of less than 5400 microns, and membranes comprising more than 50% of the total lesion area were treated. Membrane localization was subfoveal in 37 (90,5%) eyes, juxtafoveal in 4 (9,1%). Membrane type was pure classic in 14 (31,8%) eyes, predominantly classic in 15 (34,1%), occult in 10 (22,7%) eyes, and minimally classic in 3 (6,8%) eyes. Mean preoperative best corrected visual acuity was (BCVA) 0,19±0,19 (logMAR 0,88±0,38), the number of PDT was 2,52±1,66. In 20 (45,5%) eyes BCVA was preserved at one year, 12 (27,3%) eyes had moderate vision loss, 2 (4,6%) had severe vision loss and 5 (11,4%) eyes that were lost to follow up were also considered to have severe vision loss (total 7 eyes 15,9%). 4 (9,1%) gained more than 3 lines, and 1 (2,3%) eye gained more than 6 lines. Mean BCVA at the last visit was 0,20±0,23 (logMAR 0,93±0,43). No change in contrast sensitivity at one year was detected. Greatest linear diameter of the lesion increased from 3059±1336 microns to 3438±1255 at the last visit. Four (9,5%) patients reported back pain during infusion and 2 (4,5%) patients had visual loss with spontaneous recovery in 1 week.


PDT is a safe and considerably effective method of preserving vision at 1 year in eyes with CNVM due to ARMD.

Take-home message:

PDT is a safe method but it is not satisfactory. Its combination with other therapies may increase the effectiveness in preserving and improving visual function.