What is Tetrahydrozoline used for?
Tetrahydrozoline is a decongestant used to relieve redness in the eyes caused by minor eye irritations (e.g., smog, swimming, dust, or smoke). It belongs to a class of drugs known as sympathomimetic amines. It works by temporarily narrowing the blood vessels in the eye.
Some brands of tetrahydrozoline eye drops may contain lubricants. Lubricants help protect the eyes from more irritation and dryness.
How should I take Tetrahydrozoline?
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. Remove contact lenses before applying the eye drops. Wait at least 10 minutes after using this medication before inserting contact lenses.
Before using, check this product visually. Do not use if the liquid has changed color or is cloudy. Discard the medication away from children and pets.
Use this medication in the affected eye(s) up to 4 times a day as needed or as directed by your doctor.
Tilt your head back, look upward, and pull down the lower eyelid to make a pouch. Hold the dropper directly over the eye and place 1 drop into the pouch. Look downward and gently close your eyes for 1 to 2 minutes. Place one finger at the corner of the eye near the nose and apply gentle pressure. This will prevent the medication from draining away from the eye. Try not to blink and do not rub the eye. Repeat these steps if your dose is for more than 1 drop and for the other eye if so directed.
Do not rinse the dropper. Replace the dropper cap tightly after each use. If you are using another kind of eye medication (e.g., drops or ointments), wait at least 5 minutes before applying other medications. Use eye drops before eye ointments to allow the eye drops to enter the eye.
Overuse of this type of medication may result in increased eye redness (rebound effect when drug wears off). If this occurs, tell your doctor. Do not use this medication for longer than 3 to 4 days at a time.
If your condition persists or worsens after 72 hours, or if you think you may have a serious medical problem, stop using this medication and seek immediate medical attention.
How do I store Tetrahydrozoline?
Tetrahydrozoline is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store Tetrahydrozoline in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of Tetrahydrozoline that may have different storage needs. It is important to always check the product package for instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist. For safety, you should keep all medicines away from children and pets.
You should not flush Tetrahydrozoline down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. It is important to properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist for more details about how to safely discard your product.
Precautions & warnings
What should I know before using Tetrahydrozoline?
Before using tetrahydrozoline, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients (such as preservatives like benzalkonium chloride), 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: glaucoma, heart problems (e.g., heart attack, chest pain), high blood pressure, diabetes, eye infection/injury, overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism).
This drug may cause temporary blurred vision after you apply it. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires clear vision until you are sure you can perform such activities safely.
Caution is advised when using this product in children because they may be more sensitive to the effects of the product, especially eye irritation.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Is it safe during pregnancy or breast-feeding?
There are no adequate studies in women for determining risk when using this Tetrahydrozoline during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking Tetrahydrozoline. Tetrahydrozoline is pregnancy risk category N according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
FDA pregnancy risk category reference below:
- A=No risk,
- B=No risk in some studies,
- C=There may be some risk,
- D=Positive evidence of risk,
What side effects can occur from Tetrahydrozoline?
Stinging/redness in the eye, widened pupils, or blurred vision may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
If your doctor has directed you to use this medication, remember that 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 unlikely but serious side effects occur: shakiness (tremor), fast/pounding/ irregular heartbeat, headache, sweating, weakness, nervousness.
Stop using this medication and tell your doctor right away if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: eye pain, worsening redness/itching/swelling in or around the eyes, other vision problems.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
Not everyone experiences these side effects. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have any concerns about a side-effect, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.
What drugs may interact with Tetrahydrozoline?
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use, especially of: MAO inhibitors (linezolid, methylene blue, moclobemide, phenelzine, procarbazine, rasagiline, safinamide, selegiline, isocarboxazid, tranylcypromine), guanethidine, tricyclic antidepressants (e.g., amitriptyline).
Tetrahydrozoline may interact with other drugs that you are currently taking, which can change how your drug works or increase your risk for serious side effects. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. For your safety, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any drugs without your doctor’s approval.
Does food or alcohol interact with Tetrahydrozoline?
Tetrahydrozoline may interact with food or alcohol by altering the way the drug works or increase the risk for serious side effects. Please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist any potential food or alcohol interactions before using this drug.
What health conditions may interact with Tetrahydrozoline?
Tetrahydrozoline may interact with your health condition. This interaction may worsen your health condition or alter the way the drug works. It is important to always let your doctor and pharmacist know all the health conditions you currently have.
The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. You should ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using this Tetrahydrozoline.
What is the dose of Tetrahydrozoline for an adult?
Usual Adult Dose for Eye Dryness/Redness
Instill 1-2 drops into each affected eye 1-4 times a day as needed.
Remove contact lenses before administration and wait at least 15 minutes before reinserting them.
Do not use for more than 72 hours without consulting a physician.
What is the dose of Tetrahydrozoline for a child?
Usual Pediatric Dose for Eye Dryness/Redness
<6 years: Consult a physician before using.
6-18 years: Instill 1-2 drops into each affected eye 1-4 times a day as needed.
How is Tetrahydrozoline available?
Tetrahydrozoline is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:
- Ophthalmic solution,
- Compounding powder.
What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?
In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.
What should I do if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose of Tetrahydrozoline, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.
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