Four eye health stakeholder groups have come together to help define the focus of research in age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Their purpose was to prioritize clinical questions important for researchers to answer when developing clinical practice guidelines and identifying treatment outcomes important to patients. Participants in the initiative were:
- American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) Retina/Vitreous Panel
- Healthcare professionals from the American Society of Retinal Specialists (ASRS)
- Atlantic Coast Retina Conference (ACRC) and Macula 2017 meeting
- Patients from the Macular Degeneration Support community
Between January 2015 and January 2017, the participating health care professionals decided upon and assessed 17 highly important clinical questions and rated 12 of 17 questions (71%) as high priority for research to answer. MD Support members assessed those questions and rated all as high priority. Additionally, those patients identified 6 research outcomes as most important to them:
1. development of choroidal neovascularization
2. development of advanced dry AMD (geographic atrophy)
3. retinal hemorrhage
4. gain of vision
5. slowing vision loss
6. serious ocular events (eg. endophthalmitis or retinal detachment)
This investigation may help to best allocate limited resources for research associated with the treatment of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Consideration of these patient-important outcomes may help to guide clinical care and future areas of research.
The project was conducted under the auspices of the Department of Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland.
The abstract is published on the JAMA Ophthalmology website.