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Introducing New Pharmacological Therapies

At the Beirut Eye Clinic we provide an efficient service for carrying out intravitreal injections which have become a mainstay of medical therapy in the management of posterior segment pathologies.

New pharmacological agents such as anti-vascular endothelial growth factor antibodies (anti-VEGF - Avastin) block the production and growth of new vessels and reduce vascular permeability. They are injected into the patient's vitreous cavity for the treatment of several retinal diseases including age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and retinal vein occlusion. Large scale clinical trials have demonstrated that these recent


therapies not only reduce the risk of loss of vision but also improve visual acuity in a significant percentage of cases.

Other pharmacological agents that we inject to treat intraocular infections and inflammations include antibiotics, antivirals and steroids. Certain types of steroids (Triamcinolone acetonide- Kenacort) have also been shown to be very effective in resolving specific cases of macular oedema.

Intravitreal injections have proven to be generally safe. They are tailored to the disease process may need to be repeated on a long term basis to obtain the best results.

Active management for patients with age-related macular degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a leading cause of visual loss in patients over the age of 50. In the neovascular (wet) form of the disease, abnormal choroidal blood vessels grow into the subretinal space, damaging the overlying retina and leading to central visual loss.

One of the main chemical agents involved in the formation of these vessels is vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). Recent pharmacological developments have created the first opportunity to treat this disease by targeting and inhibiting the VEGF molecule thus offering more hope for patients with wet AMD. Currently available anti-angiogenic (anti-VEGF) drugs include bevacizumab (Avastin®), ranibizumab (Lucentis®) and aflibercept (Eylea®) - others are being investigated and developed and they are administered by direct injection into the vitreous cavity of the eye.


Patients with AMD require monthly visits to a retinal specialist with regular intraocular injections performed as required (every few weeks). Newly introduced treatments will maintain vision and prevent the condition from worsening in most patients with about 1 in 3 patients treated experiencing some improvement in vision.

At the Beirut Eye clinic we provide a comprehensive service for the diagnosis, treatment and follow-up of patients with age-related macular degeneration. We closely follow internationally accepted recommendations for the initiation, maintenance, and discontinuation of anti-VEGF therapies according to the best available evidence to date. We also critically research the value of all emerging treatment strategies and continuously explore future therapeutic directions in this field.

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