What should I watch for?
This medication will cause you to be very sensitive to light. Avoid exposing skin and eyes to sunlight and bright indoor lights (unshaded light bulbs at close range) for 5 days. If you are near a window in your home during daylight, make sure you have curtains or shades to block out direct sunlight. However, you should not stay in the dark. Exposing your skin to indoor light helps to inactivate the drug in the skin. You can watch TV or go to the movies. Try to avoid outside activities or chores until after sundown. If you do go outside during daylight hours within the first 5 days after your treatment, wear long-sleeved shirts and slacks, preferably tight-knit, light colored fabrics, gloves, socks and shoes, sunglasses, and a wide-brimmed hat. Sunscreens will NOT protect against these reactions. After 5 days, you may resume normal outdoor activities without any special precautions.
Following the injection, you may notice increased sensitivity of your eyes to sun, bright lights or car headlights for several days.
After the treatment, you may experience temporary changes in vision. This may interfere with your ability to drive or operate machinery. You should avoid these activities until these symptoms go away.
Common and Rare Side Effects
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
Blurred vision or other change in vision
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
Bleeding, blistering, burning, coldness, discoloration of skin, feeling of pressure, infection, itching, numbness, pain, rash, redness, scarring, stinging, swelling, tenderness, tingling, ulceration, and/or warmth at the injection site
Back pain (during infusion of verteporfin)
decreased sensitivity to touch
difficult or painful urination
difficulty in moving
feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
general feeling of discomfort or illness
increased sensitivity of skin to sunlight
loss of appetite
loss of strength or energy
muscle pain or stiffness
pain, swelling, or redness in joints
redness or other discoloration of skin
tender, swollen glands in neck
trouble in sleeping
trouble in swallowing
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.