Like all medicines, Visudyne can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them.
These side effects may occur with certain frequencies, which are defined as follows:
Very common affects more than 1 user in 10 Common affects 1 to 10 users in 100 Uncommon affects 1 to 10 users in 1,000 Rare affects 1 to 10 users in 10,000 Very rare affects less than 1 user in 10,000 Not known frequency cannot be estimated from the available data.
Most of the side effects are mild to moderate and will usually disappear a few days to a few weeks after treatment.
Common side effects
- Eye disorders: severe decrease of vision (loss of 4 lines or more within 7 days of treatment), visual disturbances such as blurred, hazy or fuzzy vision, flashes of light, decreased vision, and a change in the field of vision in the treated eye such as grey or dark shadows, blind spots or black spots.
- Infusion site side effects: as with other types of injections, some patients experienced pain, swelling, inflammation, and weeping from the infusion site.
- General disorders: feeling sick (nausea), sunburn-like reactions, tiredness, infusion-related reaction, primarily presented as back pain which may radiate to other areas, including but not limited to, the pelvis, shoulders or rib cage, and increased cholesterol.
Uncommon side effects
- Eye disorders: bleeding of the retina or into the vitreous humour (the clear gel-like substance that fills the eyeball behind the lens), and displacement of the retina in the treated eye. - Infusion site side effects: as with other types of injections, some patients experienced bleeding at the infusion site, change in skin colour and hypersensitivity. If this happens to you, there will be increased sensitivity to light in that part of the skin until the green discolouration disappears. - General disorders: pain, increased blood pressure, increased sensation, and fever.
Rare frequency side effects
- Eye disorders: lack of blood circulation to the retina or choroids (the vascular layer of the eye) in the treated eye.
Not known frequency side effects
- Eye disorders: tear in the coloured layer of the retina.
- Infusion site side effects: as with other types of injections, some patients experienced blistering. - General disorders: vasovagal reactions (light-headedness and fainting) and allergic reactions, which on rare occasions can be severe, have been reported. General symptoms can include headache, malaise (feeling unwell), fainting, sweating, dizziness, rash, hives, itching, breathlessness, flushing, or changes in blood pressure and heart rate. Infusion-related reaction, primarily presented as chest pain which may radiate to other areas, including but not limited to, the pelvis, shoulders or rib cage.
- Heart attack has been reported, particularly in patients with a history of heart disease, sometimes within 48 hours after treatment with Visudyne. In the event of suspected heart attack, seek medical attention immediately.
If any of the side effects gets serious, or if you notice any side effects not listed in this leaflet, please tell your doctor or nurse.