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Dexamethasone (Into the eye)

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

Treats inflammation of the eye caused by allergies, severe acne, keratitis, or infections. Dexamethasone eye drops are sometimes used in the ear to treat outer ear infections. 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:

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to dexamethasone, or if you have certain types of eye infections. You should not use this medicine in your ear if you have a broken ear drum.

How to Use This Medicine:

Ointment, Drop

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
  • Wash your hands before and after using the medicine. If you wear contact lenses, remove them before putting the drops in your eyes. Wait at least 15 minutes after using the eye drops before putting your lenses in.
  • Shake the bottle of medicine well just before each use.
  • 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.
  • 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. Your doctor may ask you to wear an eye pad while you are using the ointment.
  • To use the ear drops: Wash and dry your ear thoroughly. Follow your doctor's instructions on the proper way to use this medicine in your ear. One way is to drop the medicine directly into the ear. Another way is to pack the ear canal with a gauze wick that is soaked with this medicine. Do not let the tip of the dropper touch anything, including your ear.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose.
  • Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:

  • Store the medicine at room temperature, away from heat and direct light.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children and never share your medicine with anyone.

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:

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have asthma, allergies, glaucoma, cataracts, or an eye infection.
  • 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.

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 face or hands, swelling or tingling in the mouth or throat, tightness in chest, trouble breathing
  • Changes in vision
  • Discharge, redness, irritation, or pain in the eye not present before using this medicine

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: 8/4/2014


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