eLetters

3 e-Letters

  • Reponse: Ophthalmology practice during the COVID-19 pandemic

    Thank-you to the authors for sharing their departmental protocol based current international research and recommendations [1]. We have put in place many of the precautions outlined however wished to share our recent experience with regard to intravitreal injections (IVI), and additional measures put in place as a result.

    IVIs have continued in our service for sight threatening pathology throughout the UK government lockdown of the past 8 weeks. Patients have self-isolated for 7 days prior to their procedure and are screened for symptoms of COVID19 or contacts before attendance. Arriving at our facility they wash their hands, don a surgical mask and have their temperature, oxygen saturations and blood pressure checked. Social distancing is maintained in waiting areas by blocking alternate seats as mentioned.

    For the procedure itself the patient is draped and injectors wear sterile gloves, a theatre gown and a fluid resistant surgical mask as per national guidance [2].

    There was no protocol to routinely test patients attending for IVI at our units for coronavirus, however tests were performed on four consecutive injection lists on 4th and 5th May. 48 patients were tested with a mean age of 76 years (range 54-92). 2 (4%) tested positive despite being asymptomatic. They were asked not to attend and will be rescheduled. 4 (13%) decided not to attend voluntarily.

    As mentioned by the authors retinal services tend to serve an elderly population with a...

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  • The Controversial Role of Inhibitory Complement Factors in Age-Related Macular Degeneration
    Article Title: Complement factors and reticular pseudodrusen in intermediate age-related macular degeneration staged by multimodal imaging BMJ Open Ophthalmology Jan 2020, 5 (1) e000361; DOI: 10.1136/bmjophth-2019-000361
    E-letter sender: Anne M Lynch, Brandie D Wagner, Alan G Palestine, Jennifer L Patnaik, Ashley A Frazier-Abel, Marc T Mathias, Frank S Siringo, V. Michael Holers, Naresh Mandava
    E-Letter Title: Response to letter entitled “The Controversial Role of Inhibitory Complement Factors in Age-Related Macular Degeneration”
    February 12, 2020
     
     
    Dear Editor,
     
    We appreciate the comments from Shiwani et al. regarding our manuscript entitled “Complement factors and reticular pseudodrusen in intermediate age-related macular degeneration staged by multimodal imaging.” As reported in the manuscript, (1) we found significantly elevated levels of C3a, Ba, C5a and C2 in cases with the intermediate phenotype of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) compared with cataract controls without AMD. We also found significantly lower levels of Factor B, Factor H, Factor I, C1q, iC3b/C3b, and C5 in the AMD cases compare...
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  • The Controversial Role of Inhibitory Complement Factors in Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    Dear Editor,

    We read with interest the role of complement in age-related macular degeneration (AMD) explored by Lynch and colleagues1. The authors have expertly examined the numerous components of the complement system and provided much novel data, particularly in the context of intermediate AMD.

    Their results are congruent with that of the literature, especially with regard to lower levels of C3a, C5a and Ba in the setting of AMD2. Furthermore, the results of the FILLY trial have shown positive effects of the inhibition of C3 in limiting geographic atrophy and thus lend an element of support to the conclusions of this study3. We hope that the subsequent phase 3 trials – DERBY and OAKS – will lend further support and allow research such as this to translate to clinical benefit for patients4.

    However, we do feel that there may be an element of multiple hypothesis testing evident in this study that increases the risk of generating some erroneous results. We feel a Bonferroni statistical correction would have been an appropriate tool to add further robustness to the positive findings that have been demonstrated. We especially feel that the results relating to the inhibitory factors of the complement system do not tend to correlate with some of the findings in the literature. Although Lynch et al have identified lower levels of Factor B, Factor H and Factor I in the AMD arm of the study, there are numerous reports in the literature reporting the opposite...

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