Scientific article
Open access

Evolution of macular atrophy in eyes with neovascular age-related macular degeneration compared to fellow non-neovascular eyes

Published inGraefe's archive for clinical and experimental ophthalmology, vol. 261, no. 12, p. 3425-3436
Publication date2023-08-11
First online date2023-08-11


Τo evaluate the evolution of macular atrophy (MA) in patients with neovascular AMD (nAMD), compared with their fellow eyes exhibiting dry AMD (dAMD).


This retrospective study included 124 patients from three centers treated with anti-VEGF in their nAMD eye and having dAMD in the fellow eye. Patients without MA at baseline were analyzed to study the time to first MA development. Synchronous and unsynchronous time course of MA was also studied. MA was evaluated using near-infrared images, while all available optical coherence tomography (OCT) images were used to confirm the criteria proposed by the Classification of Atrophy Meetings group for complete MA.


MA first detection in nAMD eyes increased significantly from year 2 to 6 compared to dAMD eyes. Over the study’s follow-up, 45.1% of nAMD-E developed MA, compared to 16.5% of fellow eyes ( p < 0.001). When MA in the two eyes was compared in a synchronous paired manner over 4 years, nAMD eyes had an average MA progression rate of 0.275 mm/year versus 0.110 mm/year in their fellow dAMD eyes. Multivariate ANOVA revealed significant time ( p < 0.001), eye ( p = 0.003), and time-eye interaction ( p < 0.001) effects. However, when MA did develop in dAMD eyes and was compared in an asynchronous manner to MA of nAMD eyes, it was found to progress faster in dAMD eyes (dAMD: 0.295 mm/year vs. nAMD: 0.176 mm/year) with a significant time-eye interaction ( p = 0.015).


In this study, a significant difference in MA incidence and progression was documented in eyes with nAMD under treatment, compared to fellow eye exhibiting dAMD. Eyes with nAMD tended to develop more MA compared to fellow dAMD eyes. However, when atrophy did develop in the fellow dAMD eyes, it progressed faster over time compared to MA in nAMD eyes.

  • Age-related macular degeneration
  • Macular atrophy
  • Macular incidence
  • Macular progression
Affiliation Not a UNIGE publication
Citation (ISO format)
BLAZAKI, Styliani et al. Evolution of macular atrophy in eyes with neovascular age-related macular degeneration compared to fellow non-neovascular eyes. In: Graefe’s archive for clinical and experimental ophthalmology, 2023, vol. 261, n° 12, p. 3425–3436. doi: 10.1007/s00417-023-06168-0
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Article (Published version)
ISSN of the journal0721-832X

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