Understanding Glaucoma Medications (cont.)
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Other Adrenergic Agents
Other adrenergic agents became available in the 1960s and are rarely used today, having been largely supplanted by alpha adrenergic agonists. These drugs lower intraocular pressure by reducing the amount of aqueous humor produced and also reduce resistance to outflow of aqueous humor. This class of eye drops includes epinephrine (Eppy, Eppy-N) and dipivefrin (AKPro, Propine). Adrenergics may cause swelling of the macula (the center part of the retina) and eye irritation. They also may cause black deposits of the lining of the inside of the lids with extended use.
These drugs should not be used by individuals allergic to adrenergic eye drops.
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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.