Only a third of Medicare beneficiaries were persistent with anti-VEGF monotherapy each year. Overall, two-thirds of patients treated with anti-VEGF at baseline (BL) reported similar or better visual function after 2 years. However, more patients experienced difficulty in activities of daily living (ADL) and instrumental ADL (iADL) at 2 years. Future research exploring how neovascular age-related macular degeneration (nAMD) related factors impact overall functioning is warranted.
This retrospective study used pooled 3-year longitudinal data from the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey linked with Medicare fee-for-service claims in 2006–2013 and 2015–2018. Of more than 160 patients with nAMD, the majority were non-Hispanic White. In the first and second follow up (F/U) years: 35.9% and 30.5% of patients were ‘persistent’ on anti-VEGF treatment; patients received a mean of 4.2 and 3.7 injections, and had 7.9 and 6.8 clinic visits; and mean interval between consecutive injections/visits was 8.7/7.3 and 8.4/8.2 weeks, respectively. The proportion of patients reporting trouble seeing or blindness at BL, first, and second F/U years was 30.6%, 32.9%, and 27.6%, respectively. Overall, 68.6% of patients reported similar or better function in the second F/U year versus BL. However, a higher proportion of patients experienced difficulty in all ADL and most iADL in the second F/U year versus BL. ADL with greater changes were dressing and using the toilet; iADL with greater changes were preparing meals, shopping, and managing money.