Original Article

Side effects during photodynamic therapy with verteporfin - Original Article

  • Talip Örel
  • Nilüfer Koçak
  • Ahmet Selim
  • Ferit Hakan Öner
  • Süleyman Kaynak
  • Mehmet Ergin

Turk J Ophthalmol 2009;39(1):43-47

Purpose: To evaluate the side effects of ocular photodynamic therapy (PDT) with verteporfin at the time of therapy and early post-treatment period. Material and Methods: 283 patients who had been performed PDT with verteporfin between October 2003 – May 2007 were evaluated retrospectively in this study. Therapies were performed at Dokuz Eylul University Outpatient Hospital at which intensive care unit can be used whenever necessary. Pain, edema, extravasation at injection site, back pain related to infusion, photosensitivity reaction, nausea, vomiting and allergic reactions were evaluated. Transient visual abnormalities (cloudy vision, flashing lights), severe decrease in visual acuity (at first week, ≥ 4 lines), lacrimation disorders, subretinal and intravitreal hemorrhage were evaluated as ocular side effects either during or immediately after the therapy. Results: Among 283 patients included to study; two patients (%0.7) complained about tenderness of antecubital vein line, 12 patients (%4) complained about back pain and one patient ( % 0,3) complained about nausea at the time of infusion, one patient ( 0,3) complained about blurring in visual acuity (≥ 4 lines) and in four patients (%1,4) subretinal hemorrhages were detected within the first week. Photosensitivity reaction, allergic reaction, lacrimation disorders and intravitreal hemorrhage were not detected in any patients. Conclusion: Side effects of PDT with verteporfin at the time of management and soon after the therapy are generally temporary and do not effect the quality of life. Given detailed information is very important to the patients and their relatives before the management for controlling the side effects of PDT with verteporfin.

Keywords: Age related macular degeneration, photodynamic therapy, side effects of photodynamic therapy, verteporfin