Purpose: To characterize and quantify early foveal development in preterm infants and to compare this development between eyes treated with intravitreal bevacizumab or laser photocoagulation (LPC) and untreated eyes. Design: Observational case series. Participants: One hundred thirty-one preterm infants undergoing retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) screenings. Methods: Handheld OCT imaging was performed longitudinally on all patients. Thickness measurements of the inner and outer retinal layers were obtained at the foveal center and the nasal and temporal foveal rims. Comparisons between treated and untreated eyes were adjusted for age and other confounding variables. Main Outcome Measures: Weekly change in inner and outer retinal thickness and presence of inner retinal layers, ellipsoid zone (EZ), and cystoid macular changes (CMCs). Results: Outer retinal thickness at the foveal center increased by 3.1 μm/week in untreated eyes and 7.2 μm/week in bevacizumab-treated eyes (P = 0.038). Eyes treated with LPC had a lower probability of having all inner retinal layers present at the foveal center (odds ratio, 0.04; P = 0.001) and a lower probability of having the EZ present at the foveal center (odds ratio, 0.07; P = 0.024) compared with untreated eyes. Cystoid macular changes were found in 53% of patients and 22% of imaging sessions. The age-adjusted incidence of CMCs was not correlated with bevacizumab or LPC treatment. Conclusions: Intravitreal bevacizumab therapy for ROP is associated with more rapid outer retinal thickening at the foveal center, whereas LPC is associated with earlier extrusion of the inner retinal layers and delayed development of the EZ at the foveal center. Long-term follow-up is needed to determine the visual significance of these findings.
ASJC Scopus subject areas