Azithromycin Ophthalmic

Name: Azithromycin Ophthalmic

Dosing & Uses

Dosage Forms & Strengths

ophthalmic solution

  • 1% (2.5mL)

Bacterial Conjunctivitis

Apply 1 gtt to affected eye(s) twice daily (8-12 hours apart) for 2 days; THEN apply 1 gtt qDay for 5 days

Dosage Forms & Strengths

ophthalmic solution

  • 1% (2.5mL)

Bacterial Conjunctivitis

<1 years

  • Safety & efficacy not established

>1 years

  • Apply 1 gtt to affected eye(s) twice daily (8-12 hours apart) for 2 days; THEN apply 1 gtt qDay for 5 days

azithromycin Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

Less common
  • Burning, redness, stinging, or other eye irritation
Rare
  • Blistering, burning, crusting, dryness, or flaking of the skin
  • blurred vision
  • cough
  • decreased vision
  • discharge from the eye
  • fever
  • headache
  • hives or welts
  • itching, scaling, severe redness, soreness, or swelling of the skin
  • pain or tenderness around the eyes and cheekbones
  • painful irritation of the clear front part of the eye
  • shortness of breath or troubled breathing
  • skin rash
  • stuffy or runny nose
  • swelling of the face
  • swelling or puffiness of the eyes
  • tightness of the chest or wheezing

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Rare
  • Change in taste
  • dry eyes
  • loss of taste

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Change in eyesight, eye pain, or very bad eye irritation.
  • Eye discharge.

Dosing Geriatric

Refer to adult dosing.

Pregnancy Risk Factor B Pregnancy Considerations

Adverse events were not observed in animal reproduction studies. The amount of azithromycin available systemically following topical application of the ophthalmic drops is estimated to be below quantifiable limits. Systemic absorption would be required in order for azithromycin to cross the placenta and reach the fetus. When administered orally or IV, azithromycin crosses the placenta. Refer to the Azithromycin (Systemic) monograph for details.

How should I use azithromycin ophthalmic?

Azithromycin ophthalmic is usually applied twice daily for 2 days, and then once daily for 5 more days. Use exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Wash your hands before using the eye drops.

To apply the eye drops:

  • Tilt your head back slightly and pull down your lower eyelid to create a small pocket. Hold the dropper above the eye with the tip down. Look up and away from the dropper and squeeze out a drop.

  • Close your eyes for 2 or 3 minutes with your head tipped down, without blinking or squinting. Gently press your finger to the inside corner of the eye for about 1 minute, to keep the liquid from draining into your tear duct.

  • Use only the number of drops your doctor has prescribed. If you use more than one drop, wait about 5 minutes between drops.

  • Wait at least 10 minutes before using any other eye drops your doctor has prescribed.

Do not touch the tip of the eye dropper or place it directly on your eye. A contaminated dropper can infect your eye, which could lead to serious vision problems.

Do not use the eye drops if the liquid has changed colors or has particles in it. Call your pharmacist for new medicine.

Use this medication for the full prescribed length of time. Your symptoms may improve before the infection is completely cleared.

Store an unopened bottle of azithromycin ophthalmic in the refrigerator. Do not freeze.

After opening the bottle, you may keep the medication at room temperature for up to 14 days. Keep the bottle tightly closed when not in use. Protect from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

Uses

This medication is used to treat certain eye infections. It is a macrolide antibiotic that works by stopping the growth of bacteria.

This medication treats only bacterial eye infections. It will not work for other types of eye infections. Unnecessary use or misuse of any antibiotic can lead to its decreased effectiveness.

How to use Azithromycin Drops

Read the Patient Information Leaflet if available from your pharmacist before you start using azithromycin and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

To apply eye drops, wash your hands first. To avoid contamination, do not touch the dropper tip or let it touch your eye or any other surface.

Do not wear contact lenses while you are using this medicine or while you have the bacterial eye infection. Sterilize contact lenses according to manufacturer's directions, and check with your doctor before you begin using them again.

If you are using this medication for the first time, hold the dropper upright and remove the cap. This will release any extra pressure in the dropper. Put the cap back on before shaking the dropper.

Before each use, hold the dropper upside down and shake once. With the dropper still upside down, remove the cap. Tilt your head back, look upward, and pull down the lower eyelid to make a pouch. Hold the dropper directly over your eye and place 1 drop into the pouch, usually twice daily (8 to 12 hours apart) for the first 2 days and then once daily for the next 5 days or as directed by your doctor. Look downward and gently close your eyes for 1 to 2 minutes. Place one finger at the corner of your eye (near the nose) and apply gentle pressure. This will prevent the medication from draining out. Try not to blink and do not rub your eye. Repeat these steps for your other eye if so directed.

If you are using another kind of eye medication (e.g., drops or ointments), wait at least 5 to 10 minutes before applying other medications. Use eye drops before eye ointments to allow the drops to enter the eye.

Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, use it at the same time(s) each day. Continue using it for the full time prescribed. Stopping the medication too soon may result in a return of the infection.

Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.

Side Effects

Temporary eye irritation/stinging/burning or blurred vision may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

Tell your doctor right away if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: vision changes, eye pain.

Use of this medication for prolonged or repeated periods may result in other types of eye infections, including fungal infections. Contact your doctor if you notice new or worsening eye symptoms.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

List Azithromycin Drops side effects by likelihood and severity.

Renal Dose Adjustments

Data not available

(web3)