Patient Education for Eye Medication

It is important that patients understand the effects of their eye disorder and the effects of the medication treating the condition. Patients are anxious about eye disorders fearing that they could lose their vision.

Demonstrate the proper technique to administer eye drops and ointment. Be sure that the patient knows how to maintain a sterile technique so the eyedrop-per does not become contaminated.

Tell the patient about expected side effects such as blurry vision and that administering the medication at bedtime can avoid problems that could arise from temporary loss of vision.

The patient should record each time they administer the medication. This is especially important for patients who are confused or forgetful and could accidentally receive an overdose of the medication. The patient should not stop taking the medication without consulting his or her healthcare provider.

Table 22-1. Ophthalmic medications.









Idoxuridine (IDU)

Trifluridine (Viroptic)

Dexamethasone Diclofenac Na (Voltaren)

Ciprofloxacin (Cipro)

Suprofen (Profenal)


Gentamicin sulfate (Garamycin Ophthalmic)

Norfloxacin (Chibroxin)

Tobramycin (Nebcin, Tobrex)

Silver nitrate 1% (used in neonates to prevent ophthalmia neoatorum)

Tetracycline HCL




Ketorolac tromethamine (Acular)

Olopatadine HCl Ophthalmic solution

Medrysone (HMS Liquifilm)

Prednisolone acetate

Prednisolone Na phosphate

Combination: TobraDex

(tobramycin 0.3% and dexamethasone 0.1%)

Miotics: Cholinergics and beta-adrenergic blockers

Indirect-acting cholinesterase inhibitors: Short acting

Beta-adrenergic blockers

Carbonic anhydrase inhibitors

Acetylcholine Cl (Miochol)

Carbachol intraocular (Miostat)

Pilocarpine HCl (Isopto Carpine)

Pilocarpine nitrate (Ocusert Pilo-20)

Echothiophate iodide (Phospholine Iodide)

Physostigmine salicylate

(Osopto Eserine)

Betaxolol HCl (Betoptic)

Levobunolol HCl

Timolol maleate (Timoptic)

Acetazolamide (Diamox)

Brinzolamideophthalmic sus. 1%

Dichlorphenamide (Daranide)

Dorzolamide (Trusopt)

Methazolamide (Neptazane)

Table 22-1. Ophthalmic medications. (continued)






Mydriatics and Cycloplegics


Atropine sulfate

Isosorbide (Ismotic)

Cyclopentolate HCl

Mannitol (Osmitrol)

Dipivefrin HCl

Epinephrine borate

Homatropine hydrobromide (Isopto Homatropine)

Scopolamine hydrobromide

Tropicamide (Mydriacyl Ophthalmic)

Ask the patient to wear a medical alert bracelet if they are taking glaucoma medications or if they are allergic to any medication.

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