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Drug update

Ranibizumab for wet age-related macular degeneration

H Kwon Kang, Robert Chong

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Abstract

Ranibizumab (Lucentis) has revolutionised the treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration by offering hope of visual improvement in some patients and visual stabilisation in most patients.

Article Extract

The aim of ranibizumab treatment in patients with wet age-related macular degeneration is to prevent further vision loss that will impact on independent living, ability to read and social interaction through facial recognition.

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a common degenerative condition affecting the macula in individuals aged 50 years or older. The macula is the central portion of the retina responsible for fine visual tasks such as reading. AMD is the leading cause of legal blindness in Australia and other western countries. Approximately 2% of the population in the over 50s age group has end-stage AMD. This prevalence rises exponentially with age so that almost one in five people over the age of 85 years will have advanced AMD with impaired vision in at least one eye.

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