Fingolimod: therapeutic mechanisms and ocular adverse effects

P. Mandal, A. Gupta, W. Fusi-Rubiano, P.A. Keane, Y. Yit

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Fingolimod is an oral immunomodulating drug used in the management of relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS). We aim to review the published literature on ocular manifestations of fingolimod therapy and their possible underlying mechanisms. The therapeutic effects of fingolimod are mediated via sphingosine receptors, which are found ubiquitously in various organs, including lymphoid cells, central nervous system, cardiac myocytes, and smooth muscle cells. Fingolimod-associated macular oedema (FAME) is the most common ocular side effect but retinal haemorrhages and retinal vein occlusion can occur. The visual consequences appear to be mild and, in cases of FAME, resolution is often attained with discontinuation of therapy. However, in cases of retinal vein occlusion, discontinuation of fingolimod alone may not be sufficient and intra-vitreal therapy may be required. We also propose a pragmatic service pathway for monitoring patients on fingolimod therapy, which includes stratifying them by risk and visual acuity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)232-240
Number of pages9
Issue number2
Early online date25 Nov 2016
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2017


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