What is Avastin?
Avastin (Bevacizumab) is a prescription drug injected by our Jacksonville area board-certified ophthalmologists into the eye of patients suffering from a number of eye-related vision problems. Dr. Shawn Agee and Dr. John Sullivan use this medication to slow down the gradual vision loss of patients with wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD), where the membrane of the retina eventually breaks, leading to the formation of new, abnormal blood vessels. As a result, Avastin is effective since the drug is classified as an anti-VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor), which blocks the growth of these abnormal blood vessels.
In addition, Avastin is often an effective treatment for one of the side effects of diabetic retinopathy, the swelling of the macula (central portion of the retina). Other eye diseases and conditions can be treated with Avastin as determined by your doctor. Although the drug is F.D.A.-approved to treat a variety of cancers, Avastin is “off-label” in regards to treating eye issues, but has been proven safe and effective.
What to Expect
An Avastin treatment is considered an outpatient procedure. Prior to the injection, your ophthalmologist will thoroughly clean out your eye in order to prevent any infections. Next, an anesthetic will be used to numb the eye. A fine needle will be used to inject the drug into the back of your eye, which goes through the vitreous gel in the middle of the eye. The process is repeated about every 4 – 6 weeks, as needed, usually over the course of several months for you to receive maximum benefit.
"He is a very caring Doctor, he will not milk your insurance, he will not give you unnecessary surgery if you don't need it. I will never trust anyone else with my vision"- M.H. / Healthgrades / Aug 17, 2016
"Don't look any further (no pun intended). Dr. Sullivan and his staff are the BEST! We found Dr. Sullivan for 2nd opinion in hopes of him taking on the continued care my husband required after receiving incompetent care from an unassociated doctor in town who gave no informed consent, thus there was not any pt consent for all of the treatment performed. With that said we sought out Dr. Sullivan and we are completely amazed! He is the BEST. Very compassionate and knowledgeable. He truly cares about his pts! Thank-you Dr. Sullivan for caring & ALL you do!"- W.S. / Facebook / Mar 31, 2018
"I've heard really great things about this place. Keep up the good work!"- C.B. / Facebook / Jan 31, 2018
"Awesome staff...they treated my father like he was the only patient."- S.F. / Facebook / Jan 30, 2018
"Dr Agee though young, is extremely competent and knowledgeable. My surgery was well planned and executed and his staff of nurses was equally so. Hope I don't see him again, but if I need eye work he will be the one I see."- C.G. / Google / Oct 30, 2017
In some cases, other AMD treatments are combined with Avastin to provide superior results. While some patients have successful results where further vision loss is prevented, previous vision loss may not be restored. Patients should also keep in mind that future vision loss may not be completely prevented with the drug. In rare cases, some patients experience a worsening of their condition.
Ask about Avastin
Avastin can be an extremely effective treatment for patients with AMD and various eye conditions and diseases that contribute to vision loss. If you have any questions about the drug, our helpful and knowledgeable staff would be more than happy to answer them. Please call our office today for a consultation.