What are antibiotic eye drops over the counter?
Antibiotic eye drops over the counter are local preparations only that is, they are intended for putting in and are not used for oral administration. Such liquid solutions can include various basic and auxiliary substances in the composition. It may differ in consistency and effectiveness.
Mode of application
In general, the effect of antibiotics on pathogenic microflora lies in the destruction of bacteria by the chemical components that are aggressive to them, which are part of such drugs.
In practice, such drugs according to the principle of action are divided into two types: bacteriostatic and bactericidal.
At the same time, at some point (when their number becomes less critical), the immune system joins fighting bacteria. Bactericidal agents kill bacteria cells themselves. They die, but the dying microorganisms release endotoxins (toxic substances) into the human blood. To avoid the negative effects of such substances in the course of treatment also drugs-bacteriostatic eye drops are prescribed.
In what cases eye drops with antibiotics are prescribed?
Eye drops with antibiotics are prescribed for infections of the organs of vision. Symptoms of such diseases can be the following:
- secretions of mucous or purulent character from the eyes;
- drop in visual acuity;
- redness of the conjunctival membrane;
- burning and itching in the eyes.
Usually, with such symptoms, an examination is prescribed, during which pathogen microorganisms are specified. The following diagnosis may be established:
- Dacryocystitis. This is a blockage of the nasolacrimal canal, which mainly is detected in newborns, but can also be observed in adult patients. With such an obstruction, the patient experiences a burning sensation, pain, the area around the eyes swells, the conjunctiva reddens.
- Keratitis. It is a corneal inflammation of various etiologies. The patient is experiencing pain, apparently, the cornea looks blurred. The disease manifests itself as an independent pathology and may be a complication of infectious diseases of other organs.
- Hordeolum. The disease is characterized as the formation of ulcers at the edges of the lower and upper eyelid. The affected areas become inflamed, swollen and redden.
- Any infectious conjunctivitis. The most common lesion is the conjunctival membrane. It occurs at any age due to non-compliance with the rules of personal hygiene or the activity of pathogenic microflora on the background of weakened immunity. It is a corneal ulcer, which occurs with microtrauma of eyeball surface. The main disease cause is streptococcus, which is sensitive to many forms of antibiotics.
- Blepharitis. These inflammatory diseases spread to the eyelids and may be of bacterial origin. When the diagnosis has established the appearance of purulent secretions, due to which the eyelids can stick together, as with conjunctivitis. In general, antibiotics (especially of a broad spectrum of activity) are used in any infectious processes, including those arising from previous traumas (of a domestic nature or caused during ophthalmologic operations).
Groups of antibiotic eye drops over the counter
In ophthalmology, drugs of one of the following types are used:
- Aminoglycosides. The principle of action is based on the impact directly on the contents of pathogens cells. The active ingredients of such preparations penetrate the membranes of bacteria and disrupt the vital functions of microorganisms. In turn, such means are divided into three generations: the first is the oldest and least effective and at the same time has a fairly large number of side effects. The most modern means of the third generation not only have a minimal negative effect on the body but also fight against microflora resistant to weaker drugs. In total, there are about 100 antibiotic eye drops over the counter of this group, but their number is growing annually. While at the same time, some of these means are not used anymore due to the appearance of cheaper and more effective counterparts sold over the counter.
- Fluoroquinolones. This is a relatively new group of drugs. Although they are highly effective, such drugs have many contraindications and side effects. Such a situation happens as fluoroquinolones are absorbed into the systemic circulation through which they spread throughout the body. But the advantage of such drops is in their activity with respect to most bacteria and the fastest possible effect.
- Means based on the antibiotic chloramphenicol are specified in the separate category. They disrupt the processes of protein synthesis in bacterial cells at the DNA and RNA level. Such remedies are the least expensive, differ in the least number of side effects (therefore they are prescribed even to children and pregnant women), but they are not always effective.