FDA Logo Senior citizens aged 60 and above usually encounter vision loss and eye infections due to a condition called age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Recently, the Food and Drug Administration approved the drug Eylea for treating patients suffering from AMD.

This condition apparently impairs a person’s primary and central vision. Daily activities like reading and driving involve fine detailing where the macula in the eye comes into play. In AMD, this region seems to be affected which influences everyday tasks negatively.

Further, there are 2 kinds of AMD, wet and dry. The former where abnormal blood vessels are developed and in the latter a fluid is leaked into the macula making it thick leading to loss of vision. Prematurely, wet AMD manifests in the form of straight lines appearing wavy.

“Eylea is an important new treatment option for adults with wet AMD. It is a potentially blinding disease and the availability of new treatment options is important,” commented Edward Cox, M.D., M.P.H, director of the Office of Antimicrobial Products in FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.

The clinical trial involved 2,412 adult patients who were exposed to either Eylea or Lucentis. After a span of 1 year, the participants were evaluated for sharpness of vision. The outcomes of the study showed that Eylea and Lucentis were equally effective in sustaining clearness of sight.

An ophthalmologist will have to inject Eylea into the eye once every 4 weeks or 8 weeks to the patient. However, the drug is deemed to have certain side-effects such as eye pain, blood at the area of injection, floating spots in a person’s vision, cataracts and increased pressure on the eyes.

Also, patients suffering from active eye infections or ocular inflammation should not be treated with Eylea. In case of pregnant women, the drug should be used only if the advantages outdo the possible risks. Also, children do not suffer from this condition, so the procedure does not include kids.

The marketing of Eylea is handled by Regeneron Pharmaceuticals.