Font Size
A
A
A
...
5
...

Understanding Glaucoma Medications (cont.)

Prostaglandin Analogs

Selective prostanoid FP-receptor (sensitive to prostaglandin F) agonists became generally available as eye drops for the treatment of glaucoma in 1996. These include latanoprost (Xalatan), bimatoprost (Lumigan), travoprost (Travatan), unoprostone (Rescula), and tafluprost (Zioptan). The prostanoid group of eye drops is the most commonly used first-line medication for the treatment of glaucoma. Latanoprost is currently available in a generic form.

How prostaglandins/prostanoids work: These drugs, administered as eye drops, have an effect on the aqueous drainage system within the eye to increase aqueous outflow which, in turn, lowers intraocular pressure (IOP).

Who should not use these medications:

  • Persons allergic to prostaglandin eye drops
  • Persons with inflammation (swelling) of the eye

Use: These drugs are given as eye drops to the affected eye(s).

Drug or food interactions: Eye drops containing the preservative thimerosal form a crystal if administered at the same time. Wait at least 5 minutes between applications. If administered with pilocarpine eye drops, wait at least 10 minutes -- preferably, 1 hour -- between applying the two drugs.

Side effects: These eye drops should not be used while wearing contact lenses. An increase in brown pigment in the iris and gradual changes in eye color may occur. Eyelash growth and pigmentation may increase. Skin on the eyelids and around the eyes may darken. Variable loss of orbital fat has been reported. Excessive tearing, eye pain, or lid crusting may occur. Burning, stinging, foreign-body sensation (something in the eye), blurred vision, and itching have also been observed.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 11/21/2012

Must Read Articles Related to Understanding Glaucoma Medications

Adult Glaucoma Suspect
Adult Glaucoma Suspect Glaucoma is usually high pressure inside the eye that damages the optic nerve and can result in permanent vision loss. Not all 3 criteria (that is, high pressur...learn more >>
Allergic Reaction
Allergic Reaction An allergic reaction is an overreaction to a harmless substance. Symptoms and signs of an allergic reaction include hives, rashes, swelling, itching, wheezing, ...learn more >>
Angle Recession Glaucoma
Angle Recession Glaucoma Traumatic glaucoma refers to a group of ocular disorders that occur after the eye undergoes trauma. Following this trauma, different mechanisms can cause an abn...learn more >>

Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Glaucoma Medications:

Glaucoma Medications - Side Effects

Do you experience troubling side effects from your glaucoma medication?




Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Glaucoma, Unilateral: Treatment & Medication »

While any type of glaucoma can be unilateral, primary open-angle glaucoma, primary angle-closure glaucoma, primary infantile glaucoma, juvenile-onset glaucoma, and pigmentary glaucoma are generally bilateral diseases, the severity of which may be asymmetric in the two eyes.

Read More on Medscape Reference »


Medical Dictionary