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(Swedesboro NJ, January 21, 2008) Wedgewood Pharmacy has announced that it will continue to provide Avastin® (Bevacizumab) to retinal specialists and ophthalmologists who request it for their patients. The announcement responds to Avastin’s manufacturer, Genentech’s, decision to stop supplying Avastin directly to compounding pharmacies as of January 1.
Avastin is administered by retinal specialists and ophthalmologists to treat age-related wet macular-degeneration, a leading cause of blindness in the elderly. Although regulators haven't authorized Avastin's use against eye disease, it is chemically similar to Genentech’s new product, Lucentis®, which is about 50 times as costly as Avastin. On prescriptive authority of physicians, compounding pharmacies prepare, under sterile laboratory conditions, a once-monthly dose of the drug for use in the eye that costs about $40.
At Wedgewood, technicians trained in aseptic technique prepare Avastin 25mg/ml in individual syringes in a Class-1000 clean room under a Class-100 laminar-flow hood to assure sterility and quality.
“Many retinal specialists consider the Avastin treatment option as an indispensable part of their practices.” said George Malmberg, RPH, FACA, FACVP the pharmacist president and CEO of Wedgewood Pharmacy. “We will continue to meet the critical and ongoing need for Avastin in ophthalmologic practice. Unlike other firms, we do not require that our customers make a long-term contractual agreement to purchase this vital medicine from us.”
Avastin is an FDA-approved drug that is used in the treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer. Based on the pioneering work of Dr. Philip Rosenfeld, a professor of Ophthalmology at the world-renowned Bascom Palmer Eye Institute at the University of Miami, Miller School of Medicine, Avastin also has been used off-label by retinal specialists and ophthalmologists to treat thousands of patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a disease that causes blindness.
Because every patient is different and has different needs, customized, compounded medications are a vital part of quality medical care. The basis of the profession of pharmacy has always been the "triad," the patient-prescriber-pharmacist relationship.
Through this relationship, patient needs are determined by a prescriber, who chooses a treatment regimen that may include a compounded medication. Prescribers often prescribe compounded medications for reasons that include (but are not limited to) the following situations:
For additional information, visit the International Academy of Compounding Pharmacists’ Web site at www.iacprx.org and www.compoundingfacts.org.
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This content is intended for counseling purposes only. This content is informational/educational and is not intended to treat or diagnose any disease or patient. No claims are made as to the safety or efficacy of mentioned preparations. The compounded medications featured in this content have been prescribed and/or administered by prescribers who work with Wedgewood Pharmacy. You are encouraged to speak with your prescriber as to the appropriate use of any medication. Wedgewood Pharmacy’s compounded veterinary preparations are not intended for use in food and food-producing animals. All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.