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19.05.2017 | Original Paper | Ausgabe 3/2018

International Ophthalmology 3/2018

Intravitreal erythropoietin injection in late-stage optic neuropathy: a safety study on human

International Ophthalmology > Ausgabe 3/2018
Ugur Acar, Bekir Kucuk, Mehmet Koray Sevinc, Seckin Aykas, Mesut Erdurmus, Gungor Sobaci
Wichtige Hinweise

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi:10.​1007/​s10792-017-0553-z) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.



To evaluate the whether intravitreal erythropoietin (EPO) administration has any beneficial or adverse effect in patients with late-stage optic neuropathy (ON) or not.


The study examined 16 eyes of 16 patients who had late-stage ON and ≥1/20 best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) in their affected eye. There were nonarteritic ischemic ON in 10 (62.5%) eyes, traumatic ON in 4 (25.0%) eyes and methanol-induced ON in 2 (12.5%) eyes. Using pars plana approach, 2000 IU/0.2 ml EPO was administered intravitreally with a 30-gauge needle. Injections were administered three times with 6-week intervals. We compared the differences in the BCVA, intraocular pressure (IOP), retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness, pattern visual evoked potentials (p-VEP) and pattern electroretinography (p-ERG) parameters performed at initial examination and final visits.


The mean age of the patients was 52.38 ± 12.00 years; 2 (12.50%) of them were female, and 14 (87.50%) of them were male. The mean BCVA levels of 16 patients with optic atrophy were 1.12 ± 0.25 logMAR at the initial examination and 1.08 ± 0.26 logMAR at the final visit (p = 0.102). There was no statistically significant difference between the initial and final RNFL thicknesses, IOP values, p-ERG or p-VEP responses.


Intravitreal EPO injections have no beneficial or detrimental effect on the late stage of ON. Further studies are necessary to compare our results in patients with ON in earlier stages.

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