General Information about Ophthalmic (Eye) Medicines
The name of your medicine is ________________
About your Medicine
Eye drops and ointments are used in the eye
to treat irritation, inflammation, or infection.
They may also be used before and after eye
surgery and eye exams.
The safety measures and side effects are
different for each eye medicine. Make sure
you know this about the one you are using.
Before Using This Medicine
Some eye medicines may be absorbed into
the body. Be sure to tell your doctor, nurse
and pharmacist if you:
ξ Are allergic to any medicine, either
prescribed or over the counter.
ξ Are taking any other medications.
ξ Are pregnant or intend to become
pregnant while using this medicine.
ξ Let them know if you are breast
ξ Have asthma, heart disease, or any
other health concerns.
Proper Use of This Medicine
Use eye drops and ointments only as
directed. Do not use them more often than
your doctor has ordered. Doing so may
increase the chance of too much medicine
being absorbed into the body. This may
cause more chance of side effects.
If you miss a dose of this medicine, use it
as soon as possible. If it is almost time for
your next does, skip the missed dose and go
back to your regular dosing schedule. Do
not double doses.
How to use Eye Medicine
ξ Wash your hands with soap and
ξ Look at the bottle or tube.
ξ Do not use if the medicine becomes
discolored or has changed in any
ξ Note: If eye drops are a cloudy
liquid, rotate the bottle around or
roll in your hands gently for 30 to 40
seconds before using.
Tilt your head slightly back and pull the lower lid away from the eye. This can be done by:
Method I, pulling the lid down with one finger or by Method 2, pinching the lower lid and
pulling it out with two fingers. This forms a pocket between the eye and lower lid. The eye
drops will go in the pocket.
Pull lower lid
out with thumb
Using the Medicine
To prevent contamination, do not touch the
applicator tip to any surface (including the
eye). Put the cap back on right after use.
This will keep the bottle or tube clean.
ξ Put in one drop at a time. If more
than one type of drop has been
ordered, wait 5 to 10 minutes before
putting another drop into the same
eye. Let the medicine fall from the
dropper into the pocket.
ξ Squeeze a thin strip of ointment in
the pocket. 1 cm (about 1/3 inch)
strip of ointment is most often
enough unless you have been told
After putting in the medicine, lightly close
your eyelids and keep closed for 1 to 2
minutes. For drops, apply pressure to the
inside corner of your eye for 1 minute. This
will keep the medicine from draining out of
the tear ducts.
Do not rub your eyes.
Wipe away any excess with a tissue.
Wash your hands again with soap and water.
For Patients using Eye Medicine for an
Use the medicine for the full time of
treatment. This is to make sure you are
clear of any infection. If your eye condition
does not improve within a few days or if it
becomes worse, check with your doctor.
Precautions and Possible Side Effects
While Using this Medicine
After using some eye medicines, mainly eye
ointments, your vision may be blurred.
Make sure your vision is clear before you
drive or do other jobs that require you to see
Side effects are specific for each eye
medicine. Ask your doctor, nurse or
pharmacist what the side effects are for the
medicine you are using.
Your doctor may want to check your
progress at regular visits to make sure the
medicine is working properly and does not
cause side effects.
Do not use any leftover medicine for future
eye problems without first checking with
your doctor. Some eye medicines should
not be used on certain kinds of bacterial,
viral, or fungal infections. Left over eye
medicine may not work or may be unclean.
University Station Eye Clinic, 8 AM to 4:30
PM, Monday through Friday (608) 263-7171
When the clinic is closed, your call will go
to the hospital paging operator. Ask for the
“Eye Resident on Call”. Give the operator
your name and phone number with the area
code. The doctor will call you back.
Please call if you have any questions or
Your health care team may have given you this information as part of your care. If so, please use it and call if you
have any questions. If this information was not given to you as part of your care, please check with your doctor. This
is not medical advice. This is not to be used for diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Because each
person’s health needs are different, you should talk with your doctor or others on your health care team when using
this information. If you have an emergency, please call 911. Copyright © 8/2016. University of Wisconsin Hospitals
and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#4520