June 15, 2022

New Drug Therapies Are Easing the Burden of Anti-VEGF Treatments


New Drug Therapies Are Easing the Burden of Anti-VEGF Treatments

Treatments for neovascularization in the retina may be reduced to as few as two to four times per year. 

New anti-VEGF drug therapies are now available for treatment of macular diseases. Over the past two years the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved less invasive, less burdensome, and lower cost drugs and procedures. In addition to Lucentis®, Avastin®, Eylea®, and Beovu® doctors now have three additional choices for qualified patients: a sustained release implant (Susvimo®), a dual-action drug (Vabysmo®), and a biosimilar drug (Byooviz®). 

All of the anti-VEGF drugs offer their own unique sets of properties and protocols, as summarized on this site. The drug of choice is normally decided upon by an eye care specialist in accordance with a patient’s diagnosis. Patients rarely have much input, but since frequent clinic visits are often burdensome, patients should at least be informed of the increasingly relaxed dosage schedules of current medications. 

The stresses of finding transportation, managing personal mobility issues, and scheduling accompanying caregivers are increased by too-frequent clinic visits. In addition, weariness or frustration with time-consuming clinic visits can weaken a patient’s compliance with the prescribed treatment regimen. A new longer-lasting drug and a new delivery therapy are now addressing the problem. 

The following chart is intended to help patients view recommended dosage intervals (durabilities) of all ocular anti-VEGF drugs currently approved. Durabilities are expressed in numbers of weeks based upon results from the respective clinical trials.

This bar chart illustrates the recommended dosage schedules for Lucentis by Genentech (4 weeks), Avastin by Genentech (6 weeks), Eylea by Regeneron (8 weeks), Beovu by Novartis (12 weeks), Vabysmo by Genentech (16 weeks), Byooviz, a biosimilar to Lucentis by Samsung Bioepis (4 weeks), and Susvimo sustained release implant by Genentech (24 weeks).

Viewed in tandem with a patient’s medical requirements and personal  needs, this information may be useful as part of the pre-treatment orientation. To address patients’ unique pathologies, treatment protocols are expected to vary at times from these clinical recommendations.

For complete information about the products included here, see drugs.com.

© 2022, MD Support

Dan Roberts, Director
Macular Degeneration Support

We offer resources and free materials for those living with low vision.

View Resources