Avastin Treatment for Advanced Macular Degeneration

A new study released has indicated that Avastin as a treatment for advanced wet macular degeneration does not improve visual acuity.  Developed a drug to treat cancer, Avastin has been used by many eye care professionals as a treatment for macular degeneration, the leading cause of blindness in the elderly.

A series of patients with wet macular degeneration were treated with avastin each month.  Injections of Avastin were used as long as there was evidence of activity on flourescein angiography (FA) and optical coherence tomography (OCT).  All patients in the study were followed for a period of six months during their treatment with Avastin for their wet macular degeneration.

The study showed that visual acuity changed from 0.74 logMAR to 0.68 logMAR at 6 months, but was only statistically significant in patients with macular degeneration in the early stages.  The changes in retinal thickness and total lesion size were significant in both groups (early and advanced wet macular degeneration) at all times during the follow-up after being treated with Avastin.

The study investigators concluded that Avastin treatments for macular degeneration were significant for improving vision in macular degeneration patients with newly diagnosed lesions, and not an effective treatment for advanced wet macular degeneration.

The investigators indicated that more study was required to determine which candidate of patients would benefit from anti-VEGF treatments of macular degeneration such as Avastin.