Bilateral effect of unilateral ranibizumab in patients with uveitis-related macular edema

Retina. 2011 Oct;31(9):1871-6. doi: 10.1097/IAE.0b013e318213da43.


Purpose: To describe an observed therapeutic effect of ranibizumab in untreated contralateral eyes of patients with bilateral uveitis-related cystoid macular edema.

Methods: The authors conducted an open-label, prospective, nonrandomized, interventional study to evaluate the effect of intravitreal ranibizumab injections for the off-label treatment of persistent uveitic cystoid macular edema. Patients were given 3 monthly injections of 0.5 mg intravitreal ranibizumab in the eye with worse vision. Subsequent monthly ranibizumab injections were administered based on macular thickness measurements. Best-spectacle corrected visual acuity measurements and optical coherence tomography scans were performed on both eyes at baseline and at monthly follow-up visits.

Results: Three of the seven patients in our nonrandomized consecutive case series presented with controlled uveitis and cystoid macular edema bilaterally. Two of the three patients demonstrated a significant improvement in visual acuity and a reduction in macular edema in both eyes after three monthly injections to the study eye. One patient experienced limited effect bilaterally possibly because of the presence of epiretinal membranes in both eyes.

Conclusion: The authors observed a beneficial effect of ranibizumab in both eyes of patients who were treated unilaterally for uveitis-related cystoid macular edema. This warrants further investigation of the pharmacokinetics and systemic availability of ranibizumab, particularly in patients with uveitis.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / administration & dosage
  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized / administration & dosage
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Functional Laterality
  • Humans
  • Intravitreal Injections
  • Macular Edema / drug therapy*
  • Macular Edema / physiopathology
  • Middle Aged
  • Off-Label Use
  • Prospective Studies
  • Ranibizumab
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Uveitis / drug therapy*
  • Uveitis / physiopathology
  • Visual Acuity / physiology
  • Young Adult


  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • Ranibizumab