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Br J Ophthalmol. 2017 Oct;101(10):1399-1404. doi: 10.1136/bjophthalmol-2016-310041. Epub 2017 Mar 7.

International variations and trends in the treatment for retinopathy of prematurity.

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Australia and New Zealand Neonatal Network, Department of Paediatrics, University of Otago, Christchurch, New Zealand.
Australian and New Zealand Neonatal Network, Royal Hospital for Women, National Perinatal Epidemiology and Statistic Unit, University of New South Wales, Randwick, Australia.
Neonatal Research Network Japan, Maternal and Perinatal Center, Tokyo Women's Medical University, Kawadacho, Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan.
Israel Neonatal Network, Gertner Institute for Epidemiology and Health Policy Research, Sheba Medical Centre, Tel Hashomer, Israel.
Swedish Neonatal Quality Register, Department of Pediatrics/Neonatal Services, Umeå University Hospital, Umeå, Sweden.
Swiss Neonatal Network, Department of Neonatology, University Hospital Zurich, University of Zurich, Frauenklinikstrasse, Zurich, Switzerland.
UK Neonatal Collaborative, Neonatal Data Analysis Unit, Section of Neonatal Medicine, Department of Medicine, Imperial College London, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital campus, London, UK.
Department of Paediatrics, Mount Sinai Hospital and University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Canadian Neonatal Network, Maternal-Infant Care Research Centre, Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Finnish Medical Birth Register and Register of Congenital Malformations, Department of Pediatrics, Turku Univeristy Hospital, Kiinamyllynkatu, Turku, Finland.
Spanish Neonatal Network, Health Research Institute La Fe, Avenida Fernando Abril Martorell, Valencia, Spain.
Swedish Neonatal Quality Register, Department of Women's and Children's Health, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.
TIN Toscane Online, Unit of Epidemiology, Meyer Children's University Hospital, Viale Pieraccini, Florence, Italy.
Regional Health Agency, Via Pietro Dazzi, Florence, Italy.
Neonatal Research Network Japan, Department of Social Medicine, National Center for Child Health and Development, Okura, Setagaya, Tokyo, Japan.



To compare the rates of retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) and treatment of ROP by laser or intravitreal anti-vascular endothelial growth factor among preterm neonates from high-income countries participating in the International Network for Evaluating Outcomes (iNeo) of neonates.


A retrospective cohort study was conducted on extremely preterm infants weighing <1500 g at 240 to 276 weeks' gestation who were admitted to neonatal units in Australia/New Zealand, Canada, Finland, Israel, Japan, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tuscany (Italy) and the UK between 2007 and 2013. Pairwise comparisons of ROP treatment in survivors between countries were evaluated by Poisson and multivariable logistic regression analyses after adjustment for confounders. A composite outcome of death or ROP treatment was compared between countries using logistic regression and standardised ratios.


Of 48 087 infants included in the analysis, 81.8% survived to 32 weeks postmenstrual age, and 95% of survivors were screened for ROP. Rates of any ROP ranged from 25.2% to 91.0% in Switzerland and Japan, respectively, among those examined. The overall rate of those receiving treatment was 24.9%, which varied from 4.3% to 30.4%. Adjusted risk ratios for ROP treatment were lower for Switzerland in all pairwise comparisons, whereas Japan displayed significantly higher ratios. Comparisons of the composite outcome between countries revealed similar, but less marked differences.


Rates of any ROP and ROP treatment varied significantly between iNeo members, while an overall decline in ROP treatment was observed during the study period. It is unclear whether these variations represent differences in care practices, diagnosis and/or treatment thresholds.


Child health (paediatrics); Epidemiology; Retina

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