Vabysmo (faricimab-svoa) is a prescription biologic drug that’s used to treat certain types of macular degeneration. Vabysmo can cause side effects that range from mild to serious. Examples include eye pain, redness, and irritation.

Specifically, Vabysmo is used in adults to treat:

Vabysmo is a biologic drug with the active ingredient faricimab-svoa. (The letters “-svoa” in the drug’s name distinguish it from similar drugs that may be created in the future.) Biologic drugs are made from living organisms.

Vabysmo injection is a liquid solution that your doctor injects into your eye.

Keep reading to learn about the common, mild, and serious side effects that Vabysmo injection can cause. For a general overview of the drug, including details about its uses, see this article.

Some people may experience mild to serious side effects during their Vabysmo treatment. Examples of the drug’s commonly reported side effects include:

The following sections include more side effects of Vabysmo. Each person’s experience with side effects may differ.

Mild side effects have been reported with Vabysmo. These include:

  • eye pain and discomfort
  • watery eye
  • eye itching and irritation
  • feeling like there’s a foreign object in your eye
  • red, inflamed, or swollen eye
  • scratch on the surface of the eye
  • blood in the white of the eye
  • eye floaters
  • blurred vision
  • cataracts

In most cases, these side effects should be temporary. And some may be managed easily. But if you have symptoms that are ongoing or bothersome, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. And do not stop Vabysmo injections unless your doctor recommends it.

Vabysmo may cause mild side effects other than those listed above. See the drug’s prescribing information for details.

Serious side effects have been reported with Vabysmo. These include:

To learn more about the following side effects, see the “Side effects explained” section below:

  • blood clots involving the eye and the entire body
  • torn or detached retina
  • infection inside the eye

If you develop serious side effects while using Vabysmo, call your doctor right away. If the side effects seem life threatening or you think you’re having a medical emergency, immediately call 911. Or call your local emergency number.

Note: After the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves a drug, it tracks and reviews side effects of the medication. If you’d like to notify the FDA about a side effect you’ve had with Vabysmo, visit MedWatch.

Allergic reaction

For some people, Vabysmo or its inactive ingredients may cause an allergic reaction. But this side effect wasn’t reported in the drug’s studies.

In general, symptoms of an allergic reaction can be mild or serious. You can learn more about possible symptoms in this article.

What might help

If you have mild symptoms of an allergic reaction, such as a mild rash, call your doctor right away. They may suggest a treatment to manage your symptoms. And they can determine whether you should keep using Vabysmo.

If you have symptoms of a severe allergic reaction, such as swelling or difficulty breathing, call 911 right away. Or call your local emergency number. These symptoms could be life threatening and require immediate medical care.

Your doctor can confirm whether you’ve had a serious allergic reaction to Vabysmo. If so, they may have you switch to a different treatment.

Get answers to some frequently asked questions about Vabysmo’s side effects.

What are the side effects of Vabysmo vs. Eylea?

Vabysmo studies used Eylea as a comparison medication. This was to see whether Vabysmo was equally effective and safe in treating RVO, wet AMD, and DME. These studies showed that both Vabysmo and Eylea have the same common side effects. Some examples are:

These studies also confirmed warnings about severe side effects for both drugs, including:

Overall, Vabysmo may have slightly lower rates of side effects than Eylea. But more studies need to be done in the general population to confirm these results.

For more information about Eylea, see its prescribing information. If you need help choosing between Vabysmo or Eylea treatments, check with your doctor or pharmacist.

Will I get cataracts from using Vabysmo?

Yes, cataracts are a common side effect of Vabysmo. Any type of eye injection can cause cataracts. But doctors can treat cataracts successfully with surgery.

This side effect usually won’t prevent a doctor from treating you with Vabysmo.

To learn more about cataracts from using Vabysmo, talk with your doctor.

Learn more about some of the side effects Vabysmo may cause.

Blood clots

Blood clots were an uncommon systemic side effect reported in studies of Vabysmo. A systemic side effect involves the eye and the entire body.

Arterial thromboembolism (ATE) is a type of blood clot that occurs mostly in the legs and feet and sometimes the arm. ATEs can cause nonfatal stroke or heart attack. Some of the symptoms of ATE to look out for include:

  • numbness or tingling in an arm or leg
  • cold, clammy arm or leg
  • slowed or no pulse in an arm or leg
  • difficulty moving or weakness in an arm or leg
  • pain in an arm or leg
  • pale or bluish tinge to an arm or leg

Factors that can increase the risk of blood clots when using this drug include:

What might help

Before starting Vabysmo, discuss your medical history and any medications you are currently taking with your doctor. Pay attention to the signs of a heart attack or stroke listed above. If you notice any of them, seek emergency medical help.

Torn or detached retina

A torn or detached retina was a rare side effect reported in studies of Vabysmo. A torn or detached retina may cause symptoms such as:

  • sudden vision loss or blurred vision
  • a shadow in your vision
  • flashing lights in your vision
  • eye floaters or black specks in your vision
  • inability to see out the corner of your eye

Factors that can increase the risk of a torn or detached retina when using this drug include:

  • severe nearsightedness (myopia)
  • age of 65 years or older
  • a history of eye injury, eye surgery, or a torn or detached retina

What might help

Being aware of the above symptoms is important. This means to watch for them. And if you think you’ve developed any signs of them, seek emergency medical care.

Infection inside the eye

Infection inside the eye was a rare side effect reported in studies of Vabysmo. Infection inside the eye may cause symptoms such as:

  • pain
  • vision changes
  • sensitivity to light
  • redness of the white of the eye
  • drainage

Factors that can increase the risk of infection inside the eye when using this drug include:

  • older age (usually being age 65 or older)
  • weakened immune system
  • active or chronic infection

What might help

To decrease your risk of infection inside the eye, remember the following tips.

  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Pay attention to and closely follow your doctor’s before-injection and after-injection care instructions.
  • Avoid rubbing or touching your eye.
  • When using eye drops, avoid touching the tip of the dropper to your eye or anything else.

If you develop any symptoms of infection inside the eye, notify your doctor right away. Rapid awareness and prompt treatment of them can play a key role in preventing serious infection.

Keeping track of side effects

During your Vabysmo treatment, consider taking notes on any side effects you’re having. You can then share this information with your doctor. This is especially helpful when you first start using a new drug or combination of treatments.

Your side effect notes can include things such as:

  • what dose of the drug you were using when you had the side effect
  • how soon you had the side effect after starting that dose
  • what your symptoms were
  • how your symptoms affected your daily activities
  • what other medications you were taking
  • any other information you feel is important

Keeping notes and sharing them with your doctor will help them learn more about how Vabysmo affects you. They can then use this information to adjust your treatment plan if needed.

Below is important information you should consider before using Vabysmo.

Warnings

Vabysmo can sometimes cause harmful effects in people who have certain conditions. This is known as a drug-condition interaction. Other factors may also affect whether Vabysmo is a good treatment option for you.

Talk with your doctor about your health history before you start Vabysmo. Be sure to tell them if any of the following factors apply to you:

Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.