This medication is used to treat bacterial infections (such as blepharitis, conjunctivitis) of the eye and the skin around the eyes (such as eyelids). It is also used to prevent infection after eye injury or surgery. It belongs to a class of drugs known as aminoglycoside antibiotics. Gentamicin works by killing the 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.This drug should not be used in newborns due to an increased risk of serious side effects.
How to use Gentamicin Sulfate (Ophth) ophthalmic (eye)
To apply eye ointment, wash your hands first. To avoid contamination, be careful not to touch the tip of the tube or let it touch your eye, eyelid, or any other surface. Apply to the eyes only. Do not swallow or inject.
To apply eye ointments, tilt your head back, look up, and gently pull down the lower eyelid to make a pouch. Place a half-inch (1.3 centimeters) strip of ointment into the pouch as directed by your doctor. Gently close the eye and roll the eyeball in all directions to spread the medication. Try not to blink and do not rub the eye. Repeat these steps for your other eye if so directed. Wipe the tip of the ointment tube with a clean tissue to remove extra medication before recapping it. Wait several minutes for your vision to clear before driving or operating machinery.
The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Your doctor may direct you to use this medication more often at first, then use it less often as the infection improves. Do not increase your dose or use it more often than directed. Your doctor may prescribe gentamicin drops for use during the day and gentamicin ointment at bedtime.
If you are using another kind of eye medication (such as drops or ointments), wait at least 5 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 times each day. Continue using it for the full time prescribed. Stopping the medication too soon may allow the bacteria to continue to grow, which may result in a return of the infection.
Tell your doctor if your condition lasts or gets worse.
Remember that this medication has been prescribed because your doctor 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.
Use of this medication for prolonged or repeated periods may result in other types of eye infections, including fungal infections. Stop using this medication and contact your doctor if you notice new or worsening eye symptoms (such as pain, swelling, thick discharge or pus).
Rarely, gentamicin products used in the eye may be absorbed and may cause serious side effects. Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: easy bruising/bleeding, mental/mood changes (such as hallucinations).
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: 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.
Before using gentamicin, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other aminoglycoside antibiotics (such as tobramycin); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: contact lens use.
After you apply this drug, your vision may become temporarily blurred. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires clear vision until you can do it safely.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
This drug may pass into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.
This medicine may be harmful if swallowed. If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
Do not share this medication with others.
This medication has been prescribed for your current condition only. Do not use it later for another infection unless your doctor tells you to.
If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose. Use your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.
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CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.