You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking ranibizumab if you have:
- An infection in or around the eyes
- A history of blood clots or stroke
- Any allergies, including allergies to food, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant (see Lucentis and Pregnancy)
- Breastfeeding (see Lucentis and Breastfeeding).
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all other medicines you may be taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
(Click Precautions and Warnings With Ranibizumab to learn more, including information on who should not take the drug.)
Wet macular degeneration is caused by abnormal blood vessel growth in the back of the eye. The blood vessels grow behind the retina, underneath the macula (a part of the retina that is essential for detailed vision). These new blood vessels are not normal and are weak and prone to leaking. Leaking causes damage to the macula, which causes "wet" macular degeneration.
Macular edema following retinal vein occlusion is caused by a blockage of a retinal vein, leading to the leakage of fluid.
Ranibizumab is part of an antibody that is designed to bind to and inhibit vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF-A). VEGF-A is a naturally occurring protein that encourages blood vessel leakage and the growth of new blood vessels (including abnormal blood vessels). By binding to VEGF-A, ranibizumab prevents this protein from encouraging new blood vessel growth and blood vessel leakage. This helps to slow down (or even reverse) vision loss and macular damage.