Avastin and Lucentis Safe for Macular Degeneration Treatment

A recent publication in the Archives of Ophthalmology reports that both Avastin and Lucentis are safe treatments for Macular Degeneration.

Findings have shown that neither Avastin or Lucentis appear to be associated with increased risk for mortality, myocardial infarction, bleeding or stroke when compared with other wet macular degeneration treatments such as photodynamic therapy or macugen.

The current research performed a retrospective analysis of approximately 150,000 Medicare beneficiaries who made claims for macular degeneration treatments from January 1, 2005 to December 31, 2006.  Patients were classified into four groups based on the type of macular degeneration treatment received, including photodynamic therapy (active control), intravitreous macugen, avastin or lucentis.

An analysis showed the risk for death and myocardial infarction was significantly lower with Lucentis than with photodynamic therapy.

Mortality and myocardial risk associated with Avastin and the other macular degeneration treatmetns were comparible and there was no statistical significance between the treatment group and bleeding or stroke events.

Researchers concluded “We found no evidence of increased risks of mortality, myocardial infarction, bleeding, or stroke among Medicare beneficiaries who received intravitreous ranibizumab (lucentis) or bevacizumab (avastin) for neovascular age-related macular degeneration.”

These findings showing that both Avastin and Lucentis are safe macular degeneration treatments show similar results to other smaller studies.  However, the study researchers noted “The question of efficacy still needs further investigation, and large clinical trials are currently underway to address this question.”