Proliferative diabetic retinopathy and diabetic macular edema can be a potentially sightthreatening
disease if not treated correctly. It is directly correlated to the duration of diabetes and
how well managed the patients' diabetes is. In the last 15 years, the treatment of diabetic eye disease
has taken a quantum leap in methodology due to the group of biological agents named antivascular
endothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF). The introduction of the first biological agent has revolutionized
the treatment, not only in diabetic eye disease but also across most inflammatory eye diseases,
causing leakage of fluid from the blood vessels i.e., in age-related macular degeneration.
The availability of these biological agents, despite their considerable costs, have significantly improved
the outcomes measured in visual acuity compared to more traditional treatments of diabetic
retinopathy in the form of sole laser treatment and glycemic control. The agents demonstrate a favorable
safety profile, but if the rarest and most severe side effects occur, there is a potential total
loss of vision.
This review aims to make an overview of the current pharmaceutical therapeutic options in the
treatment of diabetic macular edema. This includes laser therapy, intravitreal steroids, and a primary
focus on intravitreal antivascular endothelial growth factors.