The Future of Thyroid Eye Disease

What It Is

Thyroid Eye Disease is a progressive, vision threatening autoimmune inflammatory disease that attacks tissues behind the eye pushing the eye forward out of the socket. Importantly, this interaction occurs behind the eye and not within the eye itself. Patients constantly express how the impact of this disease is often overlooked or underestimated by others, but the reality is that this disease affects all aspects of their lives. On the exterior, everyone sees how patients suffer from obvious bulging eyes. However, most patients also suffer every day with proptosis (protruding eyes), strabismus (mis-aligned eyes), double and blurry vision, intense pain, distorted vision, permanent facial disfigurement and social isolation.

Teprotumumab is the first effective treatment for symptoms of Thyroid Eye Disease. More than a decade in the making, Teprotumumab addresses the physical symptoms of Thyroid Eye Disease including reduction in extra-ocular muscle size, elimination of pain, redness, vision issues and other disfigurements in the course of a 24-week treatment period. Patients have documented seeing results within 6 weeks, describing the treatment course like “watching the disease melt away.”

It is important to note that Teprotumumab is a treatment for Thyroid Eye Disease, but does not treat the thyroid condition or Graves’ Disease itself.

How It Works

Teprotumumab is a fully human monoclonal antibody inhibitor of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1R) that works by binding to IGF-1R/TSHR signaling complexes, blocking the auto-antibodies from attacking the orbital cells. This targeted binding and blocking turns off IGF-1R/TSHR signaling at the disease source, thus reducing inflammation and preventing excessive cell growth and hyaluronan build up behind the eye. The treatment is administered via weekly supervised intravenous (IV) infusions over a 24-week treatment period.

Who Is a Candidate?

You may be a candidate for Teprotumumab if you meet the following criteria:
  • Have thyroid eye disease in the active stage
  • Does not require immediate surgical ophthalmological intervention
  • Must not be pregnant or lactating


The average final results are comparable to corrective surgery (such as orbital decompression). For many patients, treatment with Teprotumumab eliminates the need for surgical intervention. While the aesthetic outcome is similar, with surgery, one must wait many months or years for the disease to stabilize, then undergo an often intense operation and recovery. The depth of effect with Teprotumumab presents an alternative to surgery available at a much earlier stage with analogous, lasting results.

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