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    Laser photocoagulation for proliferative diabetic retinopathy. Evans Jennifer R,Michelessi Manuele,Virgili Gianni The Cochrane database of systematic reviews BACKGROUND:Diabetic retinopathy is a complication of diabetes in which high blood sugar levels damage the blood vessels in the retina. Sometimes new blood vessels grow in the retina, and these can have harmful effects; this is known as proliferative diabetic retinopathy. Laser photocoagulation is an intervention that is commonly used to treat diabetic retinopathy, in which light energy is applied to the retina with the aim of stopping the growth and development of new blood vessels, and thereby preserving vision. OBJECTIVES:To assess the effects of laser photocoagulation for diabetic retinopathy compared to no treatment or deferred treatment. SEARCH METHODS:We searched CENTRAL (which contains the Cochrane Eyes and Vision Group Trials Register) (2014, Issue 5), Ovid MEDLINE, Ovid MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, Ovid MEDLINE Daily, Ovid OLDMEDLINE (January 1946 to June 2014), EMBASE (January 1980 to June 2014), the metaRegister of Controlled Trials (mRCT) (www.controlled-trials.com), ClinicalTrials.gov (www.clinicaltrials.gov) and the World Health Organization (WHO) International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) (www.who.int/ictrp/search/en). We did not use any date or language restrictions in the electronic searches for trials. We last searched the electronic databases on 3 June 2014. SELECTION CRITERIA:We included randomised controlled trials (RCTs) where people (or eyes) with diabetic retinopathy were randomly allocated to laser photocoagulation or no treatment or deferred treatment. We excluded trials of lasers that are no longer in routine use. Our primary outcome was the proportion of people who lost 15 or more letters (3 lines) of best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) as measured on a logMAR chart at 12 months. We also looked at longer-term follow-up of the primary outcome at two to five years. Secondary outcomes included mean best corrected distance visual acuity, severe visual loss, mean near visual acuity, progression of diabetic retinopathy, quality of life, pain, loss of driving licence, vitreous haemorrhage and retinal detachment. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS:We used standard methods as expected by the Cochrane Collaboration. Two review authors selected studies and extracted data. MAIN RESULTS:We identified a large number of trials of laser photocoagulation of diabetic retinopathy (n = 83) but only five of these studies were eligible for inclusion in the review, i.e. they compared laser photocoagulation with currently available lasers to no (or deferred) treatment. Three studies were conducted in the USA, one study in the UK and one study in Japan. A total of 4786 people (9503 eyes) were included in these studies. The majority of participants in four of these trials were people with proliferative diabetic retinopathy; one trial recruited mainly people with non-proliferative retinopathy. Four of the studies evaluated panretinal photocoagulation with argon laser and one study investigated selective photocoagulation of non-perfusion areas. Three studies compared laser treatment to no treatment and two studies compared laser treatment to deferred laser treatment. All studies were at risk of performance bias because the treatment and control were different and no study attempted to produce a sham treatment. Three studies were considered to be at risk of attrition bias.At 12 months there was little difference between eyes that received laser photocoagulation and those allocated to no treatment (or deferred treatment), in terms of loss of 15 or more letters of visual acuity (risk ratio (RR) 0.99, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.89 to 1.11; 8926 eyes; 2 RCTs, low quality evidence). Longer term follow-up did not show a consistent pattern, but one study found a 20% reduction in risk of loss of 15 or more letters of visual acuity at five years with laser treatment. Treatment with laser reduced the risk of severe visual loss by over 50% at 12 months (RR 0.46, 95% CI 0.24 to 0.86; 9276 eyes; 4 RCTs, moderate quality evidence). There was a beneficial effect on progression of diabetic retinopathy with treated eyes experiencing a 50% reduction in risk of progression of diabetic retinopathy (RR 0.49, 95% CI 0.37 to 0.64; 8331 eyes; 4 RCTs, low quality evidence) and a similar reduction in risk of vitreous haemorrhage (RR 0.56, 95% CI 0.37 to 0.85; 224 eyes; 2 RCTs, low quality evidence).None of the studies reported near visual acuity or patient-relevant outcomes such as quality of life, pain, loss of driving licence or adverse effects such as retinal detachment.We did not plan any subgroup analyses, but there was a difference in baseline risk in participants with non-proliferative retinopathy compared to those with proliferative retinopathy. With the small number of included studies we could not do a formal subgroup analysis comparing effect in proliferative and non-proliferative retinopathy. AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS:This review provides evidence that laser photocoagulation is beneficial in treating proliferative diabetic retinopathy. We judged the evidence to be moderate or low, depending on the outcome. This is partly related to reporting of trials conducted many years ago, after which panretinal photocoagulation has become the mainstay of treatment of proliferative diabetic retinopathy.Future Cochrane Reviews on variations in the laser treatment protocol are planned. Future research on laser photocoagulation should investigate the combination of laser photocoagulation with newer treatments such as anti-vascular endothelial growth factors (anti-VEGFs). 10.1002/14651858.CD011234.pub2
    Application of 5G Technology to Conduct Real-Time Teleretinal Laser Photocoagulation for the Treatment of Diabetic Retinopathy-Reply. Chen Huan,Sun Hu,Chen Youxin JAMA ophthalmology 10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2021.5391
    [Indications for Retinal Laser Therapy Revisited]. Klinische Monatsblatter fur Augenheilkunde BACKGROUND:Laser therapy is an important treatment option in retinal diseases, especially in cases of vascular involvement. Most approaches are based on coagulation of retinal structures. As there is increasing use of agents targetting vascular endothelial growth factor in the treatment of macular diseases, indications for the use of laser treatment need to be reviewed carefully, especially with respect to their significance in first line therapy. This article explains recent strategies and treatment protocols. MATERIALS AND METHODS:Review of current literature in PubMed as well as synopsis of relevant guidelines. RESULTS AND CONCLUSION:Retinal laser therapy is still widely used within retinal opthalmology and covers a large spectrum of indications. Despite the success of medical approaches, retinal laser therapy remains an indispensable treatment option for proliferative diabetic retinopathy, central or peripheral vein occlusion and less frequent pathologies, such as retinopathy of prematurity or Coats's disease. 10.1055/s-0042-123831
    Application of 5G Technology to Conduct Real-Time Teleretinal Laser Photocoagulation for the Treatment of Diabetic Retinopathy. Chen Huan,Pan Xuefeng,Yang Jingyuan,Fan Jing,Qin Mingwei,Sun Hu,Liu Jinxin,Li Na,Ting Daniel Shu Wei,Chen Youxin JAMA ophthalmology Importance:Interest in teleophthalmology has been growing, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. The advent of fifth-generation (5G) wireless systems has the potential to revolutionize teleophthalmology, but these systems have not previously been leveraged to conduct therapeutic telemedicine in the ophthalmology field. Objective:To assess the feasibility of 5G real-time laser photocoagulation as a telemedicine-based treatment for diabetic retinopathy (DR). Design, Setting, and Participants:This was a prospective study involving a retinal specialist from the Peking Union Medical College Hospital in Beijing, China, who performed online 5G real-time navigated retinal laser photocoagulation to treat participants with proliferative or severe nonproliferative DR who had been recruited in the Huzhou First People's Hospital in Zhejiang Province, China, located 1200 km from Beijing from October 2019 to July 2020. Interventions:These teleretinal DR and laser management procedures were conducted using a teleophthalmology platform that used the videoconference platform for teleconsultation, after which telelaser planning and intervention were conducted with a laser system and a platform for remote computer control, which were connected via 5G networks. Main Outcomes and Measures:Diabetic eye prognosis and the real-time laser therapy transmission speed were evaluated. Results:A total of 6 participants (9 eyes) were included. Six eyes were treated via panretinal photocoagulation alone, while 1 eye underwent focal/grid photocoagulation and 2 eyes underwent both panretinal photocoagulation and focal/grid photocoagulation. The mean (SD) age was 53.7 (13.6) years (range, 32-67 years). The mean (SD) duration of diabetes was 14.3 (6.4) years (range, 3-20 years). The mean (SD) logMAR at baseline was 0.32 (0.20) (20/30 Snellen equivalent). Retinal telephotocoagulation operations were performed on all eyes without any noticeable delay during treatment. The mean (SD) number of panretinal photocoagulation laser spots per eye in 1 session was 913 (243). Conclusions and Relevance:This study introduces a novel teleophthalmology paradigm to treat DR at a distance. Applying novel technologies may continue to ensure that remote patients with DR and other conditions have access to essential health care. Further studies will be needed to compare this approach with the current standard of care to determine whether visual acuity or safety outcomes differ. 10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2021.2312
    Laser Therapy in the Treatment of Diabetic Retinopathy and Diabetic Macular Edema. Everett Lesley A,Paulus Yannis M Current diabetes reports PURPOSE OF REVIEW:This review highlights indications and evidence on laser therapy in the management of diabetic retinopathy and diabetic macular edema. Particular focus is placed upon the benefits and limitations of conventional laser photocoagulation versus more modern laser photocoagulation techniques, as well as the role of laser photocoagulation in treatment of diabetic retinopathy and diabetic macular edema with the frequent utilization of pharmacologic, including anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), therapy. RECENT FINDINGS:Laser photocoagulation remains the gold-standard therapy for the effective, definitive treatment of PDR, and also is highly effective in the management of DME. However, numerous recent studies have demonstrated the clinical efficacy and improved functional and anatomic outcomes of combination therapy with pharmacologic treatment. Continuing innovations in laser technology and improved understanding of laser-retinal interactions and pathophysiology demonstrate that laser therapy will continue to play a critical role in the treatment of diabetic retinopathy and diabetic macular edema for many years to come. 10.1007/s11892-021-01403-6