FDA Expands Approval of Lucentis for Diabetic Retinopathy

To treat diabetic retinopathy in patients with diabetic macular edema

MONDAY, Feb. 9, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has expanded the approved use for Lucentis (ranibizumab injection) 0.3 mg to treat diabetic retinopathy in patients with diabetic macular edema.

Lucentis, a once-monthly intravitreal injection, is designed to be used with other therapies to control blood glucose, blood pressure, and cholesterol, the FDA said in a news release. In some people with diabetic retinopathy who also have diabetic macular edema, abnormal blood vessels can grow and rupture on the surface of the retina, leading to severe vision loss or blindness.

The most common side effects of Lucentis include bleeding of the conjunctiva, eye pain, eye floaters, and intraocular pressure. More serious adverse reactions include endophthalmitis and retinal detachment, the FDA said.

Lucentis had been approved previously to treat other forms of macular edema, and age-related macular degeneration.

The drug is marketed by San Francisco-based Genentech, a subsidiary of Roche.

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