Objective: To determine whether patients receiving observation vs surgery for subfoveal choroidal neovascularization that was idiopathic or associated with histoplasmosis differed in preference values assigned to their health and vision status. Methods: Before and after enrollment, patients rated their current vision on a scale from 0 (blind) to 100 (perfect vision) and rated blindness and perfect vision on a scale from 0 (dead) to 100 (perfect health and vision). Scores for current vision were converted to a preference value scale (0 represents death; 100, perfect health and vision). Results: In 170 patients, no significant difference existed between the observation and surgery arms in median vision preference values at baseline (74 vs 70) or at the 12- (74 vs 78) or 24-month follow-up (77 vs 73) (P < .05). Preference values did not differ between arms for subgroups defined by age, unilateral vs bilateral choroidal neovascularization, or good vs poor baseline visual acuity. Conclusions: Submacular surgery was no better than observation in the preference values patients assigned to their health status, despite previously reported improvements in vision-specific quality of life. Trial Registration: clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT00000150 Clinical Relevance: Ophthalmologists should consider the effects on different measures of quality of life when determining treatment for patients similar to those in the Submacular Surgery Trials Group H Trial.
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