Intraocular implants for extended drug delivery: therapeutic applications

Adv Drug Deliv Rev. 2006 Nov 15;58(11):1182-202. doi: 10.1016/j.addr.2006.07.026. Epub 2006 Sep 22.


An overview of ocular implants with therapeutic application potentials is provided. Various types of implants can be used as slow release devices delivering locally the needed drug for an extended period of time. Thus, multiple periocular or intraocular injections of the drug can be circumvented and secondary complications minimized. The various compositions of polymers fulfilling specific delivery goals are described. Several of these implants are undergoing clinical trials while a few are already commercialized. Despite the paramount progress in design, safety and efficacy, the place of these implants in our clinical therapeutic arsenal remains limited. Miniaturization of the implants allowing for their direct injection without the need for a complicated surgery is a necessary development avenue. Particulate systems which can be engineered to target specifically certain cells or tissues are another promising alternative. For ocular diseases affecting the choroid and outer retina, transscleral or intrasscleral implants are gaining momentum.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Drug Delivery Systems*
  • Drug Implants*
  • Eye Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Humans
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations / administration & dosage*
  • Polymers / chemistry


  • Drug Implants
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations
  • Polymers