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VERTEPORFIN is used to treat macular degeneration. It is activated by light. This medication is given, then the eye(s) are treated with a laser light. This is called photodynamic therapy (PDT). This treatment results in a slowing of the disease and helps to maintain vision. Compare photoenhancers.
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Visudyne Side Effects

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.

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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:

More common

Blurred vision or other change in vision

Less common

Decrease in vision, may be severe

dizziness

dull nervousness

eye pain

fainting

fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat

itching, redness, or other irritation of eye

pale skin

pounding in the ears

troubled breathing on exertion

unusual bleeding or bruising

unusual tiredness or weakness

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:

More common

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

headache

Less common

Back pain (during infusion of verteporfin)

chills

cloudy urine

constipation

cough

decreased hearing

decreased sensitivity to touch

diarrhea

difficult or painful urination

difficulty in moving

double vision

dry eyes

feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings

fever

general feeling of discomfort or illness

hoarseness

increased sensitivity of skin to sunlight

joint pain

light headedness

loss of appetite

loss of strength or energy

muscle pain or stiffness

nausea

pain, swelling, or redness in joints

pelvic discomfort

redness or other discoloration of skin

runny nose

severe sunburn

shivering

skin rash

sore throat

sweating

tearing

tender, swollen glands in neck

throat congestion

trouble in sleeping

trouble in swallowing

trouble sleeping

varicose veins

voice changes

vomiting

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.

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