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Medications and Drugs

Brand Names: Alaway, Zaditor

Generic Name: ketotifen ophthalmic (Pronunciation: kee toe TYE fen off THAL mik)

What is ketotifen ophthalmic (Alaway, Zaditor)?

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.

What are the possible side effects of ketotifen ophthalmic (Alaway, Zaditor)?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using ketotifen ophthalmic and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • redness, drainage, eyelid swelling, or other signs of infection;
  • eye pain;
  • 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.

What is the most important information I should know about ketotifen ophthalmic (Alaway, Zaditor)?

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.

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.



Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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