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Angeline L. Wang, Jonathan Tsui, Hemang K. Pandya, Mitul C. Mehta; Preferred practice patterns among young retina specialists. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2018;59(9):873.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To provide an overview of treatment preferences in a variety of medical and surgical retina topics among a group of young retina specialists.
An anonymous survey was conducted from Sept. to Nov. 2017 among members of the Young Retina Forum, an active WhatsApp group dedicated to retina case discussion made up of young medical and surgical retina specialists.
Out of 44 respondents, 11% (5/44) were women and 89% (39/44) were men, including both medical retina (9% or 4/44) and surgical retina (91% or 40/44) specialists. The average age was 35.3 and average number of years in practice was 2.9. The median salary was between $300,000 and $399,000, with 67% (28/44) working in private practice, 27% (12/44) in academic institutions, and 9% (4/44) in HMOs. The majority of respondents preferred intravitreal bevacizumab as first-line treatment for foveal-involving diabetic macular edema (63%), vein occlusions (68%), and macular degeneration (66%). Aflibercept was a more popular choice in first-line diabetic macular edema patients with poor vision (43% or 19/44) compared to those with good vision (18% or 8/44). In cases of proliferative diabetic retinopathy without macular edema, most respondents prefer panretinal photocoagulation alone (61% or 27/44) or in combination with anti-VEGF (32% or 14/44) over anti-VEGF alone (7% or 3/44). Surgical retina respondents estimated that they repaired rhegmatogenous retinal detachments with vitrectomy alone 60% of the time, combined vitrectomy-buckle 20%, primary scleral buckle 10%, and pneumatic retinopexy 10%. Approximately half of surgical retina respondents (49% or 18/37) preferred scleral tunneled, non-sutured lenses over other secondary IOL placement methods.
Compared with previous data on retina practice patterns, including results of the ASRS Preferences and Trends Survey, our respondents were more likely to work in academic institutions, had fewer overall years in practice, made similar first-line medication choices in anti-VEGF therapy, and preferred similar techniques in repairing retinal detachments. Of note, despite recent studies showing that proliferative diabetic retinopathy can be treated successfully with anti-VEGF alone, the vast majority of respondents continue to prefer treatment with PRP.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2018 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Honolulu, Hawaii, April 29 - May 3, 2018.
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