PURPOSE: To evaluate the long-term (24-month) efficacy and safety of ranibizumab 0.5 mg administered pro re nata (PRN) with or without laser using an individualized visual acuity (VA) stabilization criteria in patients with visual impairment due to macular edema secondary to branch retinal vein occlusion (BRVO).
DESIGN: Phase IIIb, open-label, randomized, active-controlled, 3-arm, multicenter study.
PARTICIPANTS: A total of 455 patients.
METHODS: Patients were randomized (2:2:1) to ranibizumab 0.5 mg (n = 183), ranibizumab 0.5 mg with laser (n = 180), or laser (with optional ranibizumab 0.5 mg after month 6; n = 92). After initial 3 monthly injections, patients in the ranibizumab with or without laser arms received VA stabilization criteria-driven PRN treatment. Patients assigned to the laser arm received laser at the investigator's discretion.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Mean (and mean average) change in best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) and central subfield thickness (CSFT) from baseline to month 24, and safety over 24 months.
RESULTS: A total of 380 patients (83.5%) completed the study. Ranibizumab with or without laser led to superior BCVA outcomes versus laser (monotherapy and combined with ranibizumab from month 6; 17.3/15.5 vs. 11.6 letters; P < 0.0001). Ranibizumab with laser was noninferior to ranibizumab monotherapy (mean average BCVA change: 15.4 vs. 15.0 letters; P < 0.0001). However, addition of laser did not reduce the number of ranibizumab injections (mean injections: 11.4 vs. 11.3; P = 0.4259). A greater reduction in CSFT was seen with ranibizumab with or without laser versus laser monotherapy over 24 months from baseline (ranibizumab monotherapy -224.7 μm, ranibizumab with laser -248.9 μm, laser [monotherapy and combined with ranibizumab from month 6] -197.5 μm). Presence of macular ischemia did not affect BCVA outcome or treatment frequency. There were no reports of neovascular glaucoma or iris neovascularization. No new safety signals were identified.
CONCLUSIONS: The BRIGHTER study results confirmed the long-term efficacy and safety profile of PRN dosing driven by individualized VA stabilization criteria using ranibizumab 0.5 mg in patients with BRVO. Addition of laser did not lead to better functional outcomes or lower treatment need. The safety results were consistent with the well-established safety profile of ranibizumab.