Lucentis is commonly prescribed for the treatment of wet macular degeneration, a serious eye condition that is associated with aging. It is also approved to treat certain types of macular edema. It is injected directly into the affected eye, typically once a month. Side effects of Lucentis can include eye pain, specks in your vision, and blood spots in the whites of the eyes.
Lucentis® (ranibizumab) is a prescription medication used to treat certain eye conditions. Specifically, the drug is approved to treat:
- One of the types of age-related macular degeneration called "wet" macular degeneration
- Macular edema caused by retinal vein occlusion
- Diabetic macular edema.
Lucentis is made by Genentech, Inc.
Wet macular degeneration is caused by abnormal blood vessel growth in the back of the eye. The blood vessels grow behind the retina, underneath the macula (a part of the retina that is essential for detailed vision). These new blood vessels are not normal, and are weak and prone to leaking. Leaking causes damage to the macula, causing "wet" macular degeneration.
Macular edema following retinal vein occlusion is caused by a blockage of a retinal vein, leading to the leakage of fluid.
Lucentis is a part of an antibody that is designed to bind to and inhibit vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF-A). VEGF-A is a naturally occurring protein that encourages blood vessel leakage and the growth of new blood vessels (including abnormal blood vessels in wet macular degeneration). By binding to VEGF-A, Lucentis prevents this protein from encouraging new blood vessel growth and blood vessel leakage. This helps to slow down (or even reverse) vision loss and macular damage.