Introduction: The use of intravitreal ranibizumab has transformed the outcomes for thousands of patients with wet age related macular degeneration (AMD), which is the leading cause of blindness in developed countries. Prior to its introduction, most patients with wet AMD would rapidly lose central vision. The use of intravitreal ranibizumab has been shown to reduce certifiable visual loss by about a half. Current treatment regimens with ranibizumab in wet AMD require multiple injections over several years and so it is highly relevant to review the safety record of this important drug.Areas covered: This review considers the important ocular and systemic adverse events (AE) that have been reported in the literature, particularly in the context of the pivotal clinical trials that have been performed. It also reviews the safety of other anti-VEGF drugs that are used in wet AMD, namely bevacizumab and aflibercept, and compares these drugs with ranibizumab.Expert opinion: Overall, intravitreal ranibizumab can be considered a safe and highly effective drug for patients with wet AMD. However recent concerns about retinal thinning following ranibizumab therapy, possible systemic AE associated with all anti-VEGF drugs and the occurrence of complications relating to drug preparation and delivery must be considered. © 2014 Informa UK, Ltd.
- age-related macular degeneration
- intravitreal injection