In General Practice discard eye drop bottles 28 days after opening and in hospitals discard after 7 days unless otherwise stated.

When patients are administering more than one preparation for the eye at the same time of the day, advise them to allow a five minute interval before administering the next drug.

Be aware of the potential for systemic side-effects of topically administered drugs (eg beta-blockers such as timolol).

In general, doses given are for adults unless a child’s dose is specified. Doses, indications and durations specified may differ from those for preparations available over the counter (OTC).

Patients on long-term eye drops may develop sensitivity reactions which may be to active ingredients or to preservative systems. They should be switched to unpreserved preparations. For information on preservatives and potential sensitisers in ocular preparations refer to the SPC; GPs may also refer to the MIMS table on (sign in required)

For patients who have difficulty handling eye dropper bottles consider use of compliance aids; refer to Eye Products section of Part 3 of Scottish Drug Tariff.

For information on unlicensed ophthalmic products refer to the Unlicensed and off-label medicines list  and to Royal College of Ophthalmologist guidance at

For Ophthalmology guidance see here.