Date: 12 Feb 2009

Full macular translocation (FMT) versus photodynamic therapy (PDT) with verteporfin in the treatment of neovascular age-related macular degeneration: 2-year results of a prospective, controlled, randomised pilot trial (FMT-PDT)

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To report the outcome of best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA), near visual acuity (NVA), contrast sensitivity (CS) and vision-related quality of life (VRQOL) in patients 2 years after undergoing photodynamic therapy (PDT) or full macular translocation (FMT) for the treatment of neovascular age-related macular degeneration (AMD).


Fifty patients with predominantly classic subfoveal choroidal neovascularisation (CNV) secondary to AMD were randomized to PDT or FMT. BCVA was determined according a standardized protocol with ETDRS charts. NVA were calculated after testing with SNAB (Swiss National Association of and for the Blind) visual acuity cards. CS was measured with Pelli-Robson charts. The 39-item National Eye Institute Visual Function Questionnaire (NEI-VFQ-25 plus supplement) was performed. Primary end points were the changes of BCVA, NVA, CS and VRQOL at 24-month examination.


A stabilisation of BCVA (+0.3 letters) was found in the FMT group, whereas a decrease of more than 12 letters (-12.6 letters) was found in the PDT group (p = 0.052). Mean NVA improved by 7.0 letters in the FMT group and was superior to the PDT group (−9.6 letters, p = 0.036), while mean CS showed a time-dependent decrease in both treatment groups (FMT: −3.3 letters, PDT: −3.8 letters, p = 0.726). Considering the results of the VRQOL scores, the improvement of the subscales scores for general vision (p = 0.015), mental health (p = 0.028) and near activity (p = 0.020) were significantly higher in the FMT group.


FMT can stabilise BCVA and improve NVA over a period of 2 years in patients with subfoveal classic CNV secondary to neovascular AMD, whereas a decrease of BCVA and NVA was found in the PDT group. CS did not differ between FMT and PDT. A significant increase of VRQOL scores was only found in the FMT group and not in the PDT group. FMT seems to be a therapeutic approach that can increase visual function resulting in an improvement of patient’s VRQOL, but exhibits a higher number of severe complications compared to PDT.

Matthias Lüke and Focke Ziemssen contributed to the manuscript equally.
The authors have no competing interests related to the manuscript.
The authors have no financial interests related to the manuscript.
The authors have no competing interests related to the manuscript.
All the authors had full access to all the data in the study. The authors had full control of the primary data. The authors agree to allow Graefe’s Archive of Clinical and Experimental Research to review their data if requested. This work was presented in part at the 106th Congress of the German Society of Ophthalmology.