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Dexamethasone (Into the eye)

Dexamethasone (dex-a-METH-a-sone)

Treats inflammation of the eye. This medicine is a corticosteroid.

Brand Name(s):

Maxidex

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

This medicine is not right for everyone. Do not use it if you had an allergic reaction to dexamethasone, or if you have certain other eye infections (including herpes simplex, mycobacterial eye infection).

How to Use This Medicine:

Liquid, Ointment, Drop

  • Take your medicine as directed. Your dose may need to be changed several times to find what works best for you.
  • If you wear contact lenses, remove them before you put the drops in your eyes. Wait at least 15 minutes before you put your lenses back in.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water before and after using this medicine.
  • Shake the eye drops well just before each use.
  • Eye drops:
    • Lie down or tilt your head back. With your index finger, pull down the lower lid of your eye to form a pocket.
    • To use the eye drops: Hold the dropper close to your eye with the other hand. Drop the correct number of drops into the pocket made between your lower lid and eyeball. Gently close your eyes. Place your index finger over the inner corner of your eye for 1 minute. Do not rinse or wipe the dropper or allow it to touch anything, including your eye. Put the cap on the bottle right away. Keep the bottle upright when you are not using it.
  • Eye ointment:
    • To use the ointment: Hold the tip of the tube close to your eye with the other hand. Avoid touching the tip of the tube to your eye or finger. Squeeze a ribbon of ointment into the pocket between your lower lid and eyeball. Close your eyes for 1 to 2 minutes. Wipe the tip with a clean tissue and close the tube tightly. Keep the tube tightly closed when you are not using it.
  • Missed dose: Take a dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then and take a regular dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Store this medicine upright.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have asthma, allergies, glaucoma, cataracts, or an eye infection.
  • This medicine may cause the following problems:
    • Eye problems (including glaucoma, cataracts, infections) with long-term use
    • Increased pressure in your eye, which can damage the optic nerve
    • New or worsening eye infections
  • If you hurt your eye, develop an eye infection, or need to have eye surgery, talk with your doctor right away. You may need to change your medicine or stop using it.
  • You will need to have your eyes checked regularly if you use the medicine for 10 days or longer. Be sure to keep all appointments.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Blurred vision or change in vision
  • Increased discharge, redness, or irritation in your eye
  • Increased eye pain

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

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


Last Updated: 7/4/2018
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