Intravitreal Drug Delivery System Okay for Diabetic Macular Edema

July 9, 2009

Early studies indicate that a novel drug delivery system, laden with fluocinolone acetonide, may improve diabetic macular edema.  Results from a Phase II trials indicate that the delivery system, with steroid, is systemically well tolerated.   Of the 37 patients, no systemic complications were noted, nor was there a problem with increased intraocular pressure.  Fluocinolone has been shown to be effective in reducing diabetic macular edema.

While there is no report regarding visual outcomes, the drug delivery system does have some significant exciting advantages.  The system is designed for injection using a 25 gauges system.  This should offer a convenient, in-office, way to administer the therapy versus a surgically implantable device.  The drug may be released for a significant time period (in order of years) which makes compliance a non-issue and affords all the advantages of a sustained release system.

Additional therapies can be easily envisioned.  Investigations using Anti-VEGF drugs administered via such a drug delivery system are intriguing.

Randall V. Wong, M.D.
Retinal Specialist




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