What Are Hypromellose Eye Drops?

Jacquelyn Gilchrist

Hypromellose eye drops are an ocular lubricant, also known as artificial tears. These eye drops are often used by patients who have a reduced ability to produce natural tears. Dry eye conditions can also be caused by air pollution, air conditioning, and other environmental factors, such as strong sunlight or wind. Certain medical conditions can also contribute to the need for artificial tears, as well as infrequent blinking. Hypromellose eye drops can be used to alleviate irritation or dryness of the eye, in addition to being used to lubricate contact lenses.

Heavy smoking may cause dry eyes.
Heavy smoking may cause dry eyes.

An eye doctor may recommend that the patient use this product, or the patient may find it available in a pharmacy. Before using hypromellose eye drops, the patient should talk to his doctor or pharmacist if he has any allergies, if he takes any other medicines, or if he wears contact lenses. Patients should be particularly cautious if they use any other topical eye medicines, including ointments and drops. If so, the different products may need to be applied at different times.

Some people need help to produce natural tears.
Some people need help to produce natural tears.

The patient should always wash his hands thoroughly with soap and hot water before using hypromellose eye drops. He may then remove the outer cap of the product, holding the container by his thumb and middle finger. The head should be tilted back and a finger used to draw down the lower eyelid slightly. One drop should be carefully squeezed out of the eye drop container and into the pocket formed by the lower eyelid.

Hypromellose eye drops and other ocular lubricants are intended for external use only.
Hypromellose eye drops and other ocular lubricants are intended for external use only.

After applying the eye drop, the patient should close his eyes gently for at least one minute. He should avoid placing any pressure on the closed eyelid. Keeping the eyes closed will help prevent the medicine from leaking out. The outer cap of the product should be replaced promptly and the patient should again wash his hands thoroughly. It is essential that the applicator tip of the hypromellose eye drops does not touch any surface, or it may become contaminated.

The tip of an eye-drop container can become contaminated if it comes in contact with skin, eyes or other surfaces.
The tip of an eye-drop container can become contaminated if it comes in contact with skin, eyes or other surfaces.

Most patients may apply these eye drops three to four times daily. It may be used in only one eye or in both of them. If a patient has extremely dry eyes, his doctor may instruct him to apply the drops once every hour. Patients should be aware of possible side effects of hypromellose eye drops, which may include a temporary stinging sensation or blurry vision. Those who experience eye pain or a headache should discontinue use and contact their doctors.

Patients who wear contact lenses should consult a doctor before using hypromellose eye drops.
Patients who wear contact lenses should consult a doctor before using hypromellose eye drops.
Hypromellose eye drops help remedy dry eye symptoms.
Hypromellose eye drops help remedy dry eye symptoms.
The possible side effects of hypromellose eye drops include blurred vision and a temporary stinging sensation.
The possible side effects of hypromellose eye drops include blurred vision and a temporary stinging sensation.

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Discussion Comments

SteamLouis

@ddljohn-- Did your doctor say how long you should use them for? I've noticed that on the label, it says not to use after 28 days.

donasmrs

@ddljohn-- Hypromellose eye drops used to make my eyes sting in the beginning, but it went away after a few days. I think it does this in the beginning and then the eye get used to it. It also makes my eyes blurry for a little bit afterward, but that goes away too.

Give it some more time but if the stinging doesn't go away or gets worse, you should stop using it. I'm very happy with hypromellose eye drops. My eyes feel so much better, more moisturized since I've been using them.

ddljohn

I just started using hypromellose eye drops today. My eye doctor said during my last visit that my eyes are dry. I guess it's because I look at a computer screen all day. He recommended that I use these eye drops daily.

I used them for the first time today but they made my eye sting for a few minutes. Is this normal? Should I keep using them or is the stinging a sign that I'm allergic?

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