AMD treatments that are under trials and researches
Besides FDA-approved treatments for age-related macular degeneration (AMD), there are still many investigational treatments that are under clinical trials. These treatments can be provided only if the patient acts as a volunteer to test their safety and effectiveness.
Avastin is a promising treatment for AMD
While Avastin has been used to treat colorectal cancer, it has not been approved to treat macular degeneration. Some eye care practitioners only use Avastin in the form of off label. Studies show that Avastin brings positive results in AMD treatment. Like these FDA-approved treatments such as Lucentis and Macugen, Avastin also functions via injection into the eye.
VEGF Trap-Eye can bring similar effect as Lucentis
Another treatment that is expected to stop AMD patients’ abnormal blood vessel growth is named Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) Trap-Eye. When blood circulation in the eye is inadequate, VEGF acts as part of the system that restores normal oxygen supply. This treatment was reported to be as effective as Lucentis for wet AMD.
Combretastatin may slow down myopia AMD progression
By preventing abnormal blood vessel development, Combretastatin is indicated to slow down or halt myopia AMD progression, which affects young people with some eye diseases. The company is still carrying out clinical studies to demonstrate that whether this treatment is effective for senior AMD patients.
ECT and Radiation treatment
Encapsulated Cell Technology (ECT) is designed to maintain the sustained release of genetically engineered cells, in order to reduce retinal damage. Radiation treatment such as X-rays is also used to deal with AMD, which is still under early clinical studies.
An investigational surgical treatment
AMD can be treated in another particular way. Since AMD is associated with slow blood flow and capillary vessel damage caused by macro-proteins and fatty components, procedures that can remove these harmful substances may be an effective treatment. One of such procedures is the RHED procedure, which is also under trials.
New ways to detect abnormal vessels in the eye
Injected into a vein in the arm, the ICG dye is used to detect the presence and location of neovascular vessels. The Feeder Vessel Therapy also uses a high speed camera to trace the dye during its progression into the abnormal vessels.
Artificial retina and gene therapy are under research
Some other researches focus on both artificial retinas and gene therapy, and they are still in early stages. Artificial retina can permanently recover normal vision for AMD patients. Gene therapy is conceived to introduce specially encoded genes to alter AMD procession.
Implanted magnifying device may help patients view objects
AMD patients always have central blind spots, so that doctors have invented a tiny, implanted device to magnify images onto the retina. This treatment is known as implantable telescope, which has received significant clinical trial results.
Retaane also deals with wet AMD
Retaane treats wet-form advanced macular degeneration by attacking enzymes, which allows abnormal blood vessel growth. Left untreated, enzymes will weaken the walls of retinal blood vessels. Retaane performs in a way that is quite different from most of the other AMD treatments. It is deposited behind the eye alongside the sclera and will be replaced every six months. From the finished clinical trials, statistics showed that 73 percent of patients after receiving Retaane treatment had stable or improved vision.
Infrared laser and drug can be combined for AMD treatment
Another potential AMD treatment is Transpupillary Thermotherapy, which combines an infrared laser and drug treatment. While its creator announces positive effects, some patients say it is dissatisfying.
AMD surgery is the final solution
For patients who have failed to get satisfied with all those moderate treatments, they can finally resort to an AMD surgery, which can remove the damaged tissues.