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Prednisolone eye drops (ophthalmic solution or suspension)

prednisone eye drops

Prednisolone eye drops can reduce redness, irritation and inflammation in the eyes resulting from surgery or caused by various conditions such as allergies and eye infections.

These steroid eye drops are typically used for a short time and must be prescribed by an eye doctor. In some cases, a patient will need to taper slowly from a higher dose to a lower dose before discontinuing the medicine completely. may have side effects, 

What are prednisolone eye drops?

Prednisolone eye drops are a type of steroid eye medication administered directly into the eyes. This medication is also known as prednisolone acetate (prednisolone ac) eye drops. 

Brand names of prednisolone eye drops include:

  • AK-Pred

  • Econopred Plus

  • Inflamase Forte

  • Inflamase Mild

  • Omnipred

  • Pred Forte

  • Pred Mild

There are also eye drops that include the steroid prednisolone along with another medication — for example, with an antibiotic such as sulfacetamide. These products may be used to treat certain bacterial eye infections or complications from eye surgery. 

Brand names of combination eye drops include: 

  • Blephamide

  • Poly-Pred 

  • Vasocidin

What are prednisolone eye drops used for?

Prednisolone eye drops are used to reduce potentially damaging inflammation that may result from an eye injury, infection or surgery.

Prednisolone eye drops may be used when you experience:

By helping reduce redness, swelling, inflammation and discomfort, these steroid eye drops often allow the eyes to heal more quickly.

What to know before taking prednisolone eye drops

Some patients may not be able to take prednisolone eye drops. Before you start using these eye drops, tell your doctor or pharmacist if:

  • You have an allergy to prednisolone or other drugs

  • You have diabetes or glaucoma

  • You are pregnant or breastfeeding

You'll also need to give your eye doctor and pharmacist a complete list of any other medications you're taking (including vitamins) due to the possibility of interactions with other drugs.

How to use prednisolone eye drops

Your eye doctor will give you specific instructions on dosage and how to use prednisolone eye drops for your situation. 

Here are general directions for using prednisolone eye drops:

  1. Wash your hands well with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

  2. Shake the drops only if the label of the bottle instructs you to do so.

  3. Open the bottle and squeeze the tip to fill the dropper with medicine.

  4. Tilt your head slightly back and use a finger to pull your lower eyelid outward.

  5. Hold the tip of the dropper close to the pocket between your lower lid and your eye, without touching it to your eye.

  6. Squeeze the top of the dropper so one drop of medicine falls into the pocket.

  7. Close your eyes and tilt your head downward for two to three minutes. Relax.

  8. Touch the tear duct gently and wipe away excess medicine with a tissue.

  9. Wash your hands. If you need to put another drop in the same eye, wait at least five minutes first.

  10. When you're done, close the bottle tightly and wash your hands again.

Avoid touching the dropper to your eye or any other surface, in order to keep it clean and prevent contamination.

Prednisolone eye drops after cataract surgery

Eye doctors often prescribe prednisolone acetate eye drops after cataract surgery. Patients are typically directed to use these drops for about a month after cataract surgery to reduce inflammation and swelling in the eye during recovery.

During cataract surgery, the eye surgeon removes the cloudy lens of the eye and replaces it with an intraocular lens (IOL) to allow you to see clearly. 

Recovery from cataract surgery requires wearing a special shield and postoperative sunglasses and using medicated eye drops such as prednisolone eye drops, as prescribed by your eye surgeon.

Prednisolone eye drops dosage

The dosage for prednisolone eye drops varies based on the patient’s condition. Your dosage instructions will be on the label on the bottle you receive from your eye doctor or pharmacy.

Never get dosing information from anywhere other than your eye doctor, surgeon, pharmacist or the printed instructions on the bottle of the medication prescribed to you. 

As an example only, here's a dose commonly prescribed for prednisolone eye drops after cataract surgery:

  • Put one drop in the eye four times a day for two weeks, then

  • Reduce dosage to one drop in the eye twice a day for two weeks

It's important to put prednisolone eye drops in the eyes at regularly spaced intervals. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible. If it's almost time for your next dose, just take your next dose. Never double a dosage to make up for a missed one.

How long should you use prednisolone eye drops?

The length of time you use prednisolone eye drops will depend on your individual case and the reason you are using prednisolone eye drops. Your eye doctor will talk to you about how long to take prednisolone eye drops for your specific case. 

Use the steroid eye drops for as long as your doctor tells you. Don't stop taking them early without talking to your eye doctor first, and don't use the drops for longer than instructed. Using the medication longer than prescribed can increase the risk of side effects. 

Prednisolone eye drops side effects

Like any medication, it's important to look at the risks and benefits of using prednisolone eye drops. In general, if your eye doctor is prescribing them to you, they have decided the steroid eye drops will help you.

Temporary side effects of prednisolone eye drops may include:

  • Blurry vision

  • Eye burning

  • Eye stinging

One serious side effect of prednisolone eye drops is eye pain. If you experience eye pain while taking these steroid eye drops, consider it an emergency and contact your eye doctor immediately.

Prednisolone eye drops reviews

If your eye doctor has prescribed prednisolone eye drops, you may be searching for prednisolone eye drops reviews to see what experiences other patients have had with this medication.

Each patient is different, and another person's experience with prednisolone eye drops may be very different from yours. If you have questions or concerns, it's best to discuss them with your eye doctor.

See your eye doctor

Your eye health is important, and seeing your eye doctor for regular eye exams is one of the best ways to take care of your eyes. And if you're taking prednisolone eye drops and have any questions, issues or side effects, get in touch with your eye doctor right away.

READ NEXT: Ophthalmic Solution or Ophthalmic Ointment

Prednisolone ophthalmic. MedlinePlus. September 2017.

Prednisolone (ophthalmic route) side effects. Mayo Clinic. September 2021.

Savvy steroid use. American Academy of Ophthalmology. February 2013.

One day after cataract surgery instructions. Kaiser Permanente. Accessed November 2021.

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