This longitudinal study from America looked at the association of initiation of fingolimod and increased macular volume.
Fingolimod has been associated with the development of cystoid macular odema in a small subset of patients (<1%) but little is known about how the drug generally affects retinal tissue volume in people with MS.
Patients who initiated treatment with fingolimod, received pretreatment and ontreatment spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT). A comparison group of patients with MS never treated with fingolimod were used as the reference cohort. Results showed that the macular volume increased by a mean of 0.025cm3 in the 30 patients with MS who initiated fingolimod over a mean follow-up time of 6 months. 74% of eyes in the fingolimod-treated group exhibited an increase in macular volume compared to 37% of eyes in a comparison group of patients.
These results show a modest, relatively rapid increase in macular volume. The researchers speculate that the observed increase in macular volume most likely reflects a form of tissue swelling as opposed to neuroprotection, but more research is needed to determine the underlying mechanisms.
Authors: Nolan R, Gelfand JM, Green AJ
Source: Neurology. 2012 Dec 5. [Epub ahead of print]
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