Dexamethasone eye-drops for treatment of retinopathy of prematurity

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Both studies on animals and humans have demonstrated the role of inflammatory mediators on the retinopathy process.2,3 Dexamethasone is a glucocorticoid with a known reductive effect on several of these mediators and on the expression of VEGF.4

Starting in 2016, infants receiving laser ablation for type 1 ROP at Skåne University Hospital were administered dexamethasone eye-drops postoperatively, usually three times daily. None of the infants receiving postoperative topical steroids needed retreatment, in comparison to a general retreatment frequency of 26% nationally when postoperative dexamethasone wasn’t administered routinely.5 During 2018 and 2019, two premature infants started the dexamethasone regimen before the planned laser treatment could be performed and in one the laser could be postponed, in the other the laser treatment was cancelled. Successively, several other infants with type 2 ROP that were considered at very high risk of requiring laser ablation were administered dexamethasone drops preoperatively and the regression of ROP changes were observed on multiple occasions. Consequently, for infants with type 2 ROP born in 2020, all were administered dexamethasone drops before the laser treatment, but usually in a lower dosage of one drop daily.

We therefore aim to compare the treatment frequency for screened infants in the southern healthcare region of Sweden born during 2016 through 2020 to make a systematic retrospective analysis to compare dexamethasone treated and untreated infants.

The retrospective study was carried through in accordance with the declaration of Helsinki and received ethical approval from the Swedish ethical board. The study followed the Strengthening and Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) reporting guideline for cohort studies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-182
JournalOphthalmology Retina
Issue number2
Early online date2021
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Ophthalmology
  • Pediatrics

Free keywords

  • Retinopathy of prematurity
  • Dexamethasone


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