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New Drug Approved for Wet Age-Related Macular Degeneration

by John Hyatt, M.D., Retinal Specialist and Surgeon, Retina & Vitreous Center of Southern Oregon

In October, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced approval of Beovu (brolicizumab) injection for treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration.  

This medication provides us another tool in our effort to effectively manage this serious eye condition.  In the clinical studies that resulted in FDA approval, Beovu, when compared to another widely-used medication, demonstrated slightly greater improvement in the amount of fluid underneath and within the retina in macular degeneration patients.  A somewhat higher percentage of patients receiving Beovu also were able to increase the duration of time between their injections to 12 weeks.  

Once Medicare and other insurance entities have finalized their processes for this new medication, we look forward to adding Beovu to our currently available treatments for wet macular degeneration.  

And though this medication is designed to treat the wet form of the disease, it provides a good opportunity to address our many patients with the more common dry form of macular degeneration.  Preventive strategies such as smoking avoidance, intake of leafy green vegetables, and use of the AREDS 2 supplement decrease the risk of progression from dry to wet macular degeneration.  For those patients at risk of developing the wet form, regular eye exams and at-home monitoring for visual changes can ensure early diagnosis and timely treatment.  Also, the Retina and Vitreous Center of Southern Oregon is frequently enrolling patients in clinical studies evaluating new treatments for both dry and wet macular degeneration.  

If you would like a consultation to discuss options for management of your macular degeneration, please call us at (541) 488-3192.

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