Intravitreal Injections

You may be treated with a type of drug called anti-VEGF. This drug slows or stops damage from abnormal blood vessels. Anti-VEGF treatment can slow down vision loss and sometimes improve vision.

How is it administered?

Anti-VEGF therapy is administered into the eye, called an intravitreal injection. The injection is given into the vitreous within the eye to maximise the dose to the retina.

Injection procedure

The procedure is done in a sterile room and takes about 20-40 mins.

  • Drops will be placed into your eye to widen (dilate) the pupils.
  • You will lie face up in a comfortable position in a reclining chair.
  • Eye is numbed to reduce discomfort with anaesthetic drops.
  • Your eyes and eyelids will be cleaned with an antiseptic solution.
  • As needed, a small device may be placed to keep your eyelids open during the procedure.
  • You will be asked to look down or towards the other eye.
  • The medicine will be injected into your eye with a small needle. You may feel pressure, but not pain.

 

Your doctor will decide how many treatments you may need. It may be ongoing and may be required every month. You may also need other types of treatment.

Why is the procedure performed?

You may require this procedure if you have:

  • Macular degeneration: An eye disorder that affects the macula which can slowly impairs sharp, central vision
  • Macular oedema: Swelling or thickening of the macula, the part of your eye that provides sharp, central vision
  • Diabetic retinopathy : A complication of diabetes which can cause new, abnormal blood vessels to grow in the retina, the back part of your eye
  • Uveitis: Swelling and inflammation within the eyeball
  • Retinal vein occlusion : A blockage of the veins that carry blood away from the retina and out of the eye
  • Endophthalmitis: Infection in the inside of the eye

 

Risks

Side effects are rare, and many can be managed. They may include:

  • Increased pressure in the eye
  • Floaters
  • Inflammation
  • Bleeding
  • Damage to the retina or surrounding nerves or structures
  • Infection
  • Vision loss
  • Loss of the eye (very rare)
  • Side effects from the medicines that are used

 

Discuss the risks of specific medicines used in your eye with your doctor.

After the procedure

Following the procedure:

  • You may feel a few sensations in the eye such as pressure and grittiness, but there should not be pain.
  • There may be a little bleeding on the white part of the eye. This is common and will resolve.
  • You may seefloaters in your vision. They will improve over time.
  • DO NOT rub your eyes for several days.
  • Avoid swimming for at least 3 days.
  • Use eye drop as directed.
  • Report any eye pain or discomfort, redness, sensitivity to light, or changes in your vision to your provider right away.

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