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July 23, 1997

Radiation Therapy for Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Author Affiliations

The New York Eye and Ear Infirmary New York, NY

JAMA. 1997;278(4):288. doi:10.1001/jama.1997.03550040044024

To the Editor.  —While I commend Mr Skolnick1 for covering this promising experimental treatment option for "wet" (neovascular) macular degeneration, it was disturbing that only radiation oncologists were quoted with respect to the results of treatment. Since ophthalmologists were (or should have been) required to evaluate each patient's eligibility, measure visual acuity, and determine funduscopic changes, why were they conspicuously absent in the article?As an ophthalmologist and specialist in ophthalmic radiation therapy, I have determined eligibility, supervised irradiation, and provided follow-up care for 300 patients with wet macular degeneration. I have determined that each patient had the wet form of macular degeneration, determined that each patient should be referred for radiation therapy consultation, treatment, or both, and followed up with each closely for evidence of both adverse effects and response to treatment. During the last 4 years, we have reviewed our charts periodically and noted few adverse effects