1. Anti-Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (Anti-VEGF) medications
These antibodies are designed to bind with the Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) hormone that produces the formation and leakage of new blood vessels underneath and in the retina. We can decrease the amount of VEGF in the eye and stop or reverse the growth of new vessels by reducing the swelling. This wet ARMD treatment aims to restore the retina’s structure and improve vision.
The medications are injected into the eye via the sclera (white portion of the eye) and into the vitreous cavity behind each lens every month. Once we have a dry retina, we will continue to inject monthly. After that, we try to spread out the injections as much as possible. Our goal to maintain good vision and a dry retina is to give as few injections over time as possible. Wet macular degeneration is a chronic condition that requires close monitoring and treatment for the rest of a patient’s life.
Approximately 1/3 of patients who have received Anti-VEGF treatment will see an improvement in their vision of 3 lines (for example, 20/60 to 30). Ninety-five percent of patients have the same visual acuity as when they started, and ten percent see a decrease in their vision after receiving treatment.
The main risks with intraocular injection are infections, bleeding, and retinal detachment. The most serious of these is an infection within the eye; the occurrence rate is somewhere between 1/1000 and 1/5000.
2. Macular Laser
A macular laser is used for burning the retina and abnormal blood vessels. This was the first wet ARMD treatment and was initially used in the middle of vision, resulting in immediate vision loss. It was considered a fair trade-off as sight stabilized and was much better five years later than eyes that were not treated.
The macular laser can also treat blood vessels outside the fovea, the center of vision. The laser will cause a blind spot in the vision, but when used outside of the fovea, it should not result in loss of visual acuity.
After laser wet ARMD treatment, new blood vessels will come back 50% of the time.
In some instances, the macular laser may be considered in combination with Anti-VEGF treatment.
Seek Treatment for Wet ARMD
If your vision suffers from wet macular degeneration, call Retina & Vitreous of Lousiana for wet ARMD treatment. Our retina specialist will help treat your condition with effective treatments.