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Repeated eye injections linked to glaucoma surgery risk

New research reveals a significantly higher risk of glaucoma surgery for patients who have seven or more anti-VEGF injections annually


A new study had reported an elevated risk of glaucoma surgery among patients who have repeated eye injections of the drug bevacizumab.

The research, published in JAMA Ophthalmology, found that patients who received seven or more intravitreous bevacizumab injections per year had a higher risk of undergoing glaucoma surgery.

Studies have already established an increased risk of elevated intraocular pressure from anti-VEGF injections, but the data on developing moderate to advanced glaucoma requiring surgery was previously unclear.

Anti-VEGF injections are used to treat several common causes of vision loss, including wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and diabetic macular oedema.

The study examined the number of annual injections among a group of 74 glaucoma surgery patients and 740 controls.

Patients who had seven or more injections per year were 2.48 times more likely to require glaucoma surgery, while no significantly higher risk was found in patients with six or fewer injections.

“Clinicians should be aware of the potential association of repeated, recent intravitreous anti-VEGF injections for diseases, such as exudative AMD, with subsequent need for glaucoma surgery,” the authors wrote.