Esterberg E, Acharya NR. Corticosteroid-sparing therapy: practice patterns among uveitis specialists. J Ophthalmic Inflamm Infect. 2012 Mar;2(1):21-8. doi: 10.1007/s12348-011-0047-5

PURPOSE: This study aims to determine uveitis specialists' practice patterns, preferences, and perceptions of corticosteroid-sparing therapies for the initial treatment of chronic noninfectious uveitis.

METHODS: A survey was distributed to the American Uveitis Society and Proctor email listservs in order to restrict the respondents to specialists who likely have extensive experience in the use of immunomodulatory therapy. Topics included effectiveness, usage, and preferences related to seven immunomodulatory treatments.

Among the 45 responders, the majority (59%) had greater than 10 years of experience treating uveitis. Methotrexate was the most commonly used initial therapy for anterior, intermediate, and posterior/panuveitis (85%, 57%, and 37%), and the most preferred for anterior (55%). Mycophenolate mofetil was the most preferred for intermediate (35%) and posterior/panuveitis (42%). Primary reasons not to prescribe a treatment were effectiveness for azathioprine, safety/tolerability for cyclosporine and cyclophosphamide, and a mixture of cost, safety/tolerability, and difficulty of administration for the biologic drugs.

CONCLUSIONS: Within the group of highly experienced uveitis specialists, methotrexate is still the most commonly used initial treatment. Although newer biologic drugs are seen as effective, they are not commonly used, or even preferred, as initial corticosteroid-sparing treatment.

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