In an attempt to characterize trends and regional variances in retinal imaging usage in the United States Medicare fee-for-service population, researchers discovered that practitioners are choosing to use their OCT more and their fundus photography and intravenous fluorescein angiography (IVFA) less. 

This cross-sectional, retrospective database analysis from 2012 to 2016 included retina specialists performing either intravitreal anti-VEGF injections or posterior segment laser photocoagulation and no Nd:YAG laser capsulotomy. The study evaluated their use of fundus photography, OCT, IVFA, indocyanine-green angiography and B-scan ultrasound.

The team found that OCT increased from 61.5% in 2012 to 70.5% in 2016, while IVFA decreased from 20.9% to 15.1% and fundus photography from 14.6% to 11.7% over the same time period. By 2016, they note, Midwesterners were the most likely to use OCT (75.2%) and the least likely to use IVFA (12.0%), while practitioners in the West used OCT the least (68.4%) and IVFA the most (17.0%).

Wibbelsman TD, Pandit RR, Xu D, et al. Trends in retina specialist imaging utilization from 2012 to 2016 in the United States Medicare fee-for-service population. Am J Ophthalmol. June 29, 2019. [Epub ahead of print].