What Is Bacitracin Ophthalmic?

Jacquelyn Gilchrist
Jacquelyn Gilchrist

Bacitracin ophthalmic is a medication that is prescribed for the treatment of bacterial infections of the eye. Depending on the specific brand the patient is prescribed, this medicine may be combined with other antibiotic drugs, including polymyxin and neomycin. Bacitracin ophthalmic drugs work by halting the spread of the bacteria.

Certain precautions should be followed while using bacitracin ophthalmic ointment. Patients should always use the full course of their prescriptions, even if their symptoms begin to improve. They should exercise caution while driving or performing similar tasks, because this drug can temporarily cause blurred vision. Contact lenses should not be worn while a patient is using the ointment, and they should be discarded or thoroughly sterilized if they make contact with the eye during the infection. When applying the medicine, the applicator tip must not touch any surface, including the patient's skin, in order to prevent a secondary infection.

The patient should wash his hands thoroughly before applying a dose of bacitracin ophthalmic ointment. While standing in front of a mirror, he should pull his lower eyelid down slightly tilt his head back. He may then apply a small strip of the ointment into the lower eyelid, close his eyes, and wait for two minutes. The applicator tip must not touch the eyelid, and patients should wash their hands well afterward.

Some side effects may occur from the use of bacitracin ophthalmic ointment, which should be reported to the prescribing physician immediately. Dizziness, feeling faint, and tightness in the chest have been reported, along with difficulty swallowing or breathing. Patients may infrequently experience a rash, hives, or swelling of the area around the face. Other side effects may include eye pain, eye discharge, or a scaly, red patch around the eye. The eye may also itch, burn, or become swollen, red, and irritated.

Before using this eye infection drug, patients must disclose all of their other medical conditions. It is not generally expected to harm an unborn baby, however women who are pregnant should discuss possible risks with their doctors. As of 2011, it is unknown whether the medicine may harm a nursing infant. Bacitracin ointment may be contraindicated for use by those with kidney disease, hearing problems, or a viral or fungal infection.

This drug may also interact with other medicines. Before using it, patients should disclose their other medications and supplements, especially any other antibiotics such as aminoglycoside antibiotics like gentamicin, streptomycin, and tobramycin.

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