Side Effects of Pegaptanib
Cataracts, eye irritation or pain, and eye discharge are some of the more commonly reported side effects of pegaptanib. In most cases, these side effects are minor and usually don't require medical attention. However, there are some potentially serious pegaptanib side effects that should be reported to your healthcare provider immediately, such as eye infections, retinal detachment, and a sudden decrease in vision.
As with any medicine, side effects are possible with pegaptanib sodium (Macugen®); however, not everyone who takes the drug will experience side effects. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or can easily be treated by you or your healthcare provider.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with pegaptanib. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list of pegaptanib side effects with you.)
Pegaptanib has been studied thoroughly in clinical trials. In these studies, the side effects that occur in a group of people taking the drug are documented and are then compared to side effects that occur in another group of people not taking the medicine. This way, it is possible to see what side effects occur, how often they appear, and how they compare to the group not taking the medicine.
In these studies, the most common side effects of pegaptanib (occurring in 10 to 40 percent of people) included:
- Eye discharge
- Eye irritation or pain
- High blood pressure (hypertension)
- Specks in your vision ("floaters")
- Swelling of the cornea of the eye.
Other common pegaptanib side effects, occurring in 6 to 10 percent of people, included:
- Inflammation of the eyelids
- Seeing flashes of light
- Conjunctivitis ("pink eye")
- Diarrhea or nausea
- Urinary tract infection (UTI, or bladder infection).