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June 4, 1982


JAMA. 1982;247(21):2970-2971. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03320460070028

Diabetic Retinopathy  One of the most important aspects in the treatment of eye diseases is the effect of photocoagulation on diabetic retinopathy. The collaborative study of the National Eye Institute has provided important and significant results.1For the first time the treatment of this condition has been put on a firm scientific basis. Additional follow-up studies have now confirmed previous reports that photocoagulation as used in the study protocol reduces the risk of severe visual loss by 50% or more. Harmful effects (decrease of vision by one or more lines, constriction of peripheral visual field) were also observed (especially when the treatment was performed with a xenon arc coagulator). However, the two-year risk of severe visual loss without treatment outweighs the harmful treatment effects in two groups: (1) in eyes with new vessels on or within one disc diameter of the optic disc equaling or exceeding one-fourth to one-third