Generic Name: ketotifen ophthalmic (kee toe TYE fen off THAL mik)Brand names: Alaway, Zaditor, Refresh Eye Itch Relief, Eye Itch Relief, Zyrtec Itchy Eye
Ketotifen is an antihistamine that inhibits the body's release of a chemical called histamine. Histamine can produce allergy symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose, and watery eyes.Ketotifen ophthalmic is used to treat itching of the eyes caused by allergy to dust, pollen, animals, or other allergens.
Ketotifen ophthalmic may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Use this medication exactly as directed on the label, or as it has been prescribed by your doctor. Do not use the medication in larger amounts, or use it for longer than recommended.
If you wear contact lenses, remove them before applying ketotifen ophthalmic. This medication may contain a preservative (benzalkonium chloride) that may cause discoloration of contact lenses. Wait at least 10 minutes after using in the eye drops before putting contact lenses into your eyes.Do not allow the medicine dropper tip to touch any surface, including the eyes or hands. If the dropper becomes contaminated it could cause an infection in your eye, which can lead to vision loss or serious damage to the eye.What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using ketotifen ophthalmic?Do not use this medication if you are allergic to ketotifen, or if you have an untreated eye infection. Ketotifen ophthalmic should not be used to treat eye irritation caused by wearing contact lenses. FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. It is not known whether ketotifen passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby. Do not use this medication in a child younger than 3 years old without the advice of a doctor.
Use this medication exactly as directed on the label, or as it has been prescribed by your doctor. Do not use the medication in larger amounts, or use it for longer than recommended.Wash your hands before using the eye drops.
If you wear contact lenses, remove them before applying ketotifen ophthalmic. This medication may contain a preservative (benzalkonium chloride) that may cause discoloration of contact lenses.
To apply the eye drops:
Tilt your head back slightly and pull down your lower eyelid. Hold the dropper above the eye with the dropper tip down. Look up and away from the dropper as you squeeze out a drop, then close your eye. Gently press your finger to the inside corner of the eye (near your nose) for about 1 minute to keep the liquid from draining into your tear duct. If you use more than one drop in the same eye, wait about 5 minutes before putting in the next drop.
After using the eyedrops, wait at least 10 minutes before putting contact lenses into your eyes.Do not use the eye drops if the liquid has changed colors or has particles in it. Call your doctor for a new prescription. Store the drops at room temperature away from heat and moisture. Keep the bottle tightly closed when not in use.
Use the medication as soon as you remember the missed dose. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and use the medicine at your next regularly scheduled time. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
An overdose of ketotifen ophthalmic is not expected to produce life-threatening symptoms.
redness, drainage, eyelid swelling, or other signs of infection;
vision changes; or
severe itching of the eyes worse than before using the medication.
Less serious side effects may include:
mild burning, stinging, or eye irritation;
dryness of the eyes; or
increased sensitivity to light.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Usual Adult Dose for Allergic Conjunctivitis:
Instill 1 drop into the affected eye(s) every 8-12 hours.
Usual Pediatric Dose for Allergic Conjunctivitis:
<3 years: Safety and efficacy have not been established.3-18 years: Instill 1 drop into the affected eye(s) every 8-12 hours.
There may be other drugs that can interact with ketotifen ophthalmic. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.