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Geographic Atrophy

Pachychoroid GA progresses slower, shows unique demographic features, study finds

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Pachychoroid geographic atrophy (GA) and conventional GA exhibit distinct clinical characteristics and progression rates, according to a study that found pachychoroid GA is associated with younger age, male predominance, better visual acuity, thicker choroids, smaller GA areas, and significantly slower progression rates compared to conventional GA.

This retrospective, multicenter observational study conducted across university hospitals in Japan included 173 eyes (38 eyes with pachychoroid GA and 135 eyes with conventional GA). A subset of 101 eyes was followed over time to assess GA progression rates. Pachychoroid GA was identified based on the presence of pachychoroid features and the absence of drusen.

Key Findings:

  • Demographics: The pachychoroid GA group was significantly younger, with a mean age of 70.3 years compared to 78.7 years in the conventional GA group. This group also had a higher male predominance (89.5% vs 55.6%).
  • Visual Acuity and Choroidal Thickness: Patients with pachychoroid GA exhibited better visual acuity (0.15 vs 0.40 in logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution) and thicker choroids (312.4 µm vs 161.6 µm).
  • GA Characteristics: The pachychoroid GA group had a higher incidence of unifocal GA (94.7% vs 49.6%) and smaller GA areas (0.59 mm² vs 3.76 mm²).

In the follow-up group, the mean GA progression rate was significantly lower for pachychoroid GA (0.11 mm/year) compared to conventional GA (0.27 mm/year). This slower progression rate persisted even after adjusting for age and baseline GA area.

Reference
Sato Y, Ueda-Arakawa N, Takahashi A, et al. Clinical Characteristics and Progression of Pachychoroid and Conventional Geographic Atrophy. Ophthalmol Sci. 2024;4(5):100528. doi: 10.1016/j.xops.2024.100528. PMID: 38827489; PMCID: PMC11143896.

This content is independent editorial sponsored by Astellas. Astellas had no input in the development of this content.

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