Macular Degeneration Home > Macugen Side Effects
Swelling of the cornea of the eye, cataracts, and eye irritation or pain are the most commonly reported Macugen side effects. In most cases, these are mild and either don't require medical attention or can be treated easily. However, certain side effects of Macugen are potentially serious and should be reported to a healthcare provider immediately, including sensitivity to light, eye infections, or retinal detachment.
As with any medicine, side effects are possible with Macugen® (pegaptanib sodium); however, not everyone who takes the drug will experience side effects. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or can easily be treated by you or your healthcare provider.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with Macugen. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list of Macugen side effects with you.)
Macugen has been studied thoroughly in clinical trials. In these studies, the side effects that occur in a group of people taking the drug are documented and are then compared to side effects that occur in another group of people not taking the medicine. This way, it is possible to see what side effects occur, how often they appear, and how they compare to the group not taking the medicine.
In these studies, the most common side effects of Macugen (occurring in 10 to 40 percent of people) included:
- Eye discharge
- Eye irritation or pain
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- Specks in your vision ("floaters")
- Swelling of the cornea of the eye.
Other common Macugen side effects, occurring in 6 to 10 percent of people, included:
- Inflammation of the eyelids
- Seeing flashes of light
- Conjunctivitis ("pink eye")
- Diarrhea or nausea
- Urinary tract infection (UTI, or bladder infection).