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What Are Retaine Eye Drops + Side Effects

Views: 9837
Reviewed by Nymark M, PhD on November 4, 2016

Across the United States and the world today, dry eye syndrome is one of the most common conditions that people suffer from in relation to their eye and vision. This condition can affect different people in different ways, and it often comes with a range of symptoms including a burning, itching, or generally painful sensation in the eyes. For some people, this particular syndrome can also lead to excessive tearing or watery eyes so that people mistakenly believe that they must be suffering from an allergic reaction.

Retaine is a form of eye drop medication that can be used to relieve some of the symptoms of dry eye. Recommended for cases of irritation and discomfort, doctors prescribe these eye drops to people who suffer from dry eye conditions as a result of too much exposure to sun, wind, heating, air conditioning, certain medications, and even excessive computer use or reading.

What Is Retaine?

Retaine generally contains one or more of the following ingredients:

  • Dextran
  • Glycerin
  • Carboxymethlcellulose
  • Polyethylene glycol
  • Hypromellose
  • Polysorbate
  • Providone
  • Polyvinyl alcohol

Just like other artificial tears or eye lubricants, Retaine is used to keep the eyes moist when these are unable to produce the right tear layer or tear quality for sufficient lubrication. This lubrication is essential in keeping the eye protected from infection and injury, while also limiting the symptoms of dry eyes that can include feeling as though something is perpetually in the eye itself.

Most medical professionals recommend the use of artificial tear solutions and eye lubricants instead of relying on commercial eye drops. The reason for this is that some ingredients of eye drops might lead to addiction and further problems when used for long periods of time.

How to Use Retaine MGD

If Retaine is prescribed for you, always follow the instructions exactly even if the leaflet or instructions that come with the drops say something different to what your doctor has told you. If you feel uncertain about any of the information that you read regarding Retaine, you can always consult with your pharmacist or doctor. Never use a solution that has changed in appearance in that it has become cloudy or strangely colored. Sometimes, you might notice debris floating in the solution and this could indicate that it is contaminated. Remember, however, that certain brands of Retaine that use polysorbates and glycerin might have a milky appearance, and this is perfectly normal as long as the solution remains the same color. Check the label to find out whether your drops need to be shaken before use.

Usually, these can be used as frequently as they are needed, but your doctor should provide you with guidelines about how you should be taking your medication. In general, it’s unlikely that a doctor will recommend that you use these drops more than three times a day. Before applying the drops, wash your hands to avoid any contamination. Tilt your head back, pull the skin away from the lower portion of your eye gently with your finger tips, and place one drop of the solution into the pocket that you have created. Make sure that you do not touch the dropper to your eye or any other surface. Once the drops have been applied look down and gently close your eyes, then press your finger into the corner of your eye next your nose gently to prevent the solution from draining out.

It’s generally a good idea to give the drops some time to settle before you attempt to use any other ointment or cream around the eye. What’s more, if you are using more than one drop of Retaine at a time, it may be helpful to wait five minutes between each application. You should always speak to your doctor about whether or not it is safe to use them when wearing contact lenses, as some lubricants can damage the contact lenses.

Precautions to Take with Retaine

Remember to speak to your pharmacist or doctor if you are allergic to any of the ingredients of the lubricant eye drops. Remember that many eye drop solutions including Retaine contain inactive ingredients that might lead to allergic reactions. What’s more, if you are suffering from any other health problems, inform your doctor about them.

It is also worth noting that this product can also cause blurring and discomfort around the eyes during the initial moments when it is applied. This is why most experts recommend that you should avoid operating machinery, driving, or engaging in any other activity that may require clear vision until your vision has become clear again.

In most cases, if you are using this product under the direction of your doctor, then he or she will probably already be aware of any possible drug interactions that may take place, and therefore will be monitoring you for danger signs. Always speak to your doctor if you start to notice any unusual side effects or problems that occur soon after using Retaine. Side effects with this product are rare, but like any form of medication, they can sometimes happen.

It’s a good idea to tell your doctor or pharmacist about all of the non-prescription and prescription medications that you are taking, particularly if you are using other kinds of eye medication.

Side Effects to Watch Out For

If you notice that you have serious problems with your sight or have side effects that do not go away for long periods of time it’s important to speak to your doctor as quickly as possible. Remember that your vision may be blurred temporarily when the product is first used, and you may suffer from minor stinging, burning and irritation for a temporary amount of time after application. However, if any of these effects worsen or are persistent you should speak to your pharmacist or doctor.

Side effects might include:

  • Change in vision
  • Eye pain
  • Continued redness and irritation
  • Strange taste in the mouth
  • General eye discomfort

Most of these side effects may be temporary and should naturally dissipate within a period of less than 72 hours. However, if you are in severe discomfort or the problem persists for longer than this time, seek emergency help.

Sometimes the above symptoms may be caused by an allergic reaction and are not side effects. Serious allergic reactions are rare, but if they do appear they might include:

  • Swelling
  • Itching
  • Rash
  • Problems with the tongue, throat and face
  • Severe dizziness
  • Trouble breathing

Keep in mind that this medication is also harmful if it is swallowed. If someone overdoses on the medication and experiences serious symptoms such as trouble breathing or passing out, it’s important to seek emergency help as quickly as possible. Though most of the best lubrication eye drops can be used as and when they are needed, it is important to follow the instructions that are given to you by your doctor and avoid using too much of the same substance in a given time period. Make sure that you also follow the correct instructions when storing Retaine to avoid contamination to the bottle or the solution within. If the liquid in the bottle appears chalky in any way, make sure to consult with your doctor before you use it, as this could be a sign that some of the substances within the drops are contaminated.

Resources and References:

Retaine CMC Lubricant Eye Drops – An overview of Retaine (Drugs.com)

Need a Better Artificial Tear? – A comprehensive look at the abilities of Retaine as a lubricating substance (Eyedolatryblog.com)