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Medications and Drugs

Brand Names: Lucentis

Generic Name: ranibizumab (ophthalmic) (Pronunciation: ra NIB i ZUE mab)

What is ranibizumab (Lucentis)?

Ranibizumab is made from a human antibody fragment. It works by keeping new blood vessels from forming under the retina (a sensory membrane that lines the inside of the eye). In people with a certain type of eye disease, new blood vessels grow under the retina where they leak blood and fluid. This is known as the "wet form" of macular degeneration.

Ranibizumab is used to treat the wet form of age-related macular degeneration.

Ranibizumab may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What are the possible side effects of ranibizumab (Lucentis)?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • vision changes;
  • eye pain, redness, or irritation;
  • discharge or bleeding from the eye;
  • increased eye sensitivity to light;
  • swelling around your eye;
  • seeing "stars" or flashes of light, especially in your peripheral (side) vision;
  • pain or burning when you urinate.
  • sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side of the body; or
  • sudden headache, confusion, problems with vision, speech, or balance.

Other less serious side effects are more likely to occur, such as:

  • itchy or watery eyes;
  • dry eyes;
  • blurred vision;
  • runny or stuffy nose, cough, sore throat; or
  • joint or muscle pain.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most important information I should know about ranibizumab (Lucentis)?

Do not receive this medication if you are allergic to ranibizumab, or if you have an infection in or around your eye. Before you receive this medication, tell your doctor if you have glaucoma.

Ranibizumab is given as an injection into your eye. Your doctor will use a medicine to numb your eye before giving you the injection. You will receive this injection in your doctor's office or other clinic setting.

Ranibizumab is usually given once a month. After you have received the first 4 injections, your doctor may change your injection schedule to once every 3 months. Follow your doctor's instructions.

Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects: vision changes, eye pain or redness, discharge or bleeding from your eye, increased eye sensitivity to light, swelling around the eye, or seeing flashes of light.

Call your doctor for instructions if you miss an appointment to receive your ranibizumab injection.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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