Impact of baseline Diabetic Retinopathy Severity Scale scores on visual outcomes in the VIVID-DME and VISTA-DME studies

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To evaluate intravitreal aflibercept versus laser in subgroups of patients with baseline Diabetic Retinopathy Severity Scale (DRSS) scores ≤43, 47, and ≥53 in VIVID-DME and VISTA-DME.


Patients with diabetic macular oedema were randomised to receive intravitreal aflibercept 2 mg every 4 weeks (2q4), intravitreal aflibercept 2 mg every 8 weeks after five initial monthly doses (2q8), or macular laser photocoagulation at baseline with sham injections at every visit. These post hoc analyses evaluate outcomes based on baseline DRSS scores in patients in the integrated dataset. The 2q4 and 2q8 treatment groups were also pooled.


748 patients had a baseline DRSS score based on fundus photographs (≤43, n=301; 47, n=153; ≥53, n=294). At week 100, the least squares mean difference between treatment groups (effect of intravitreal aflibercept above that of laser, adjusting for baseline best-corrected visual acuity) was 8.9 (95% CI 5.99 to 11.81), 9.7 (95% CI 5.54 to 13.91), and 11.0 (95% CI 7.96 to 14.1) letters in those with baseline DRSS scores ≤43, 47, and ≥53, respectively. The proportions of patients with ≥2 step DRSS score improvement were greater in the intravitreal aflibercept group versus laser, respectively, for those with baseline DRSS scores of ≤43 (13% vs 5.9%), 47 (25.8% vs 4.5%), and ≥53 (64.5% vs 28.4%).


Regardless of baseline DRSS score, functional outcomes were superior in intravitreal aflibercept-treated patients, demonstrating consistent treatment benefit across various baseline levels of retinopathy.

Trial registration numbers

NCT01331681 and NCT01363440, Post-results.

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