The UNC School of Pharmacy Compounding Lab
Pharmaceutical Solutions III:
Ophthalmic Solutions

Administering Ophthalmic Dosage Forms


How to Use Ophthalmic Drops


Eye Dropper

  1. Wash your hands carefully with soap and warm water.
  2. If the product container is transparent, check the solution before use. If it is discolored or has changed in any way since it was purchased (e.g., particles in the solution, color change), do not use the solution.
  3. If the product container has a depressible rubber bulb, draw up a small amount of medication into the eye dropper by first squeezing, then relieving pressure on the bulb.
  4. Tilt the head back with chin tilted up and look toward the ceiling.
  5. With both eyes open, gently draw down the lower lid of the affected eye with your index finger.
  6. In the "gutter" formed, place one drop of the solution.
    IMPORTANT: The dropper or administration tip should be held as near as possible to the lid without actually touching the eye. DO NOT allow the dropper or administration tip to touch any surface.
  7. If possible, hold the eyelid open and do not blink for 30 seconds.
  8. You may want to press your finger against the inner corner of your eye for one minute. This will keep the medication in your eye.
  9. Tightly cap the bottle.

Comments


  • This is a sterile solution. Contamination of the dropper or eye solution can lead to a serious eye infection.
  • If irritation persists or increases, discontinue use immediately.
  • Generally, eye makeup should be avoided while using eye solutions.
  • You may want to use a mirror when applying the drops, or it may be much easier to have someone help you instill your eye drops.

 

How To Administer An Ophthalmic Ointment

  1. Wash your hands carefully with soap and warm water.
  2. You may want to hold the ointment tube in your hand for a few minutes to warm and soften the ointment.
  3. Gently cleanse the affected eyelid with warm water and a soft cloth before applying the ointment.
  4. In front of a mirror, with the affected eye looking upward, gently pull the lower eyelid downward with your index finger to form a pouch.
  5. Squeeze a thin line (approximately ¼ - ½ inch) of the ointment along the pouch.
    IMPORTANT: Be very careful when applying this ointment. DO NOT allow the tip of the ointment tube to touch the eyelid, the eyeball, your finger, or any surface.
  6. Close the eye gently and rotate the eyeball to distribute the ointment. You may blink several times to evenly spread the ointment.
  7. Replace the cap on the ointment tube.

After you apply the ointment, your vision may be blurred temporarily. Do not be alarmed. This will clear up in a short while, but do not drive a car or operate machinery until your vision has cleared.

Comments

  • This is a sterile ointment. Contamination of the tip or the cap of the tube can lead to a serious eye infection.
  • If irritation persists or increases, discontinue use immediately.
  • Generally, eye makeup should be avoided while using eye ointments.
  • It may be much easier to have someone help you apply your eye ointment