WASHINGTON (March 20, 2013)—The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning doctors that a compounding pharmacy is recalling syringes of the Roche drug Avastin after receiving reports of eye infections in some patients.
The FDA said Georgia-based Clinical Specialties received five reports of eye infections from physicians who used the drug to treat macular degeneration, a common vision disorder that affects seniors.
The compounding pharmacy is recalling 40 lots of Avastin distributed since December to doctors' offices in Georgia, Louisiana, South Carolina and Indiana.
Avastin is approved as a cancer drug, but it contains the same active ingredient as Lucentis, another Roche drug that’s approved for macular degeneration.
For years, compounding pharmacies have repackaged Avastin into small vials for use by eye doctors.
Repackaged injections of Avastin cost about $50, compared with $2,000 for Lucentis.