Eye drops: pharmaceutical forms and dosage

Depending on the frequency of administration, there are different container systems available for eye drops: small plastic vials for single usage belong to so-called single-dose systems, conventional dropper bottles with several millilitres of content are described as multi-dose systems. As well as eye drops, ointments and gels are also available for treatment at night time or in very severe cases of dry eyes.

Pharmaceutical form: single-dose systems

The classic single-dose systems include the so-called single-use vials. This is a small, transparent vial made of plastic which contains exactly enough eye lubricant for one dose. Single-use vials contain sterile solutions: their tops are snapped off just before use. However, as they are thrown away after every administration, these systems are not resource-saving. It is not necessary to add preservatives to single-dose systems as pathogens cannot get into the vials.
Benefits of this pharmaceutical form at a glance:

  • Good tolerability because preservative-free
  • Hygienically harmless, provided that not re-used
  • Practical when out and about

Pharmaceutical form: multi-dose systems

The classic multi-dose systems include plastic dropper bottles which normally contain ten millilitres of artificial tears for multiple administration. They are fitted with an appropriate attachment which facilitates drop-by-drop dosage. Normally, the bottle is held vertically above the eye which is to be treated with the eye drops. Depending on the system, the user either has to squeeze the container or execute a small pumping action.

A lot of conventional multi-dose systems also have preserving agents added to the eye drops in order to make the solution sustainable against invasive germs. An exception to this are the new, sterile multi-dose systems (for example, from the HYLO® EYE), which are characterized by the patented COMOD® System Because of their construction and their valve technology, they can efficiently prevent the penetration of germs, even for repeat applications. With these systems, there is no need for preservatives and they minimise the danger of the eye being further damaged by irritating additives. For this reason, patients who are dependent on long-term treatment with eye drops should consult their pharmacist about these new preservative-free eye drops in multi-dose systems.
Benefits of preservative-free pharmaceutical form in a multi-dose system:

  • Good tolerability as preservative-free
  • Economical (products from the HYLO® EYE range enable at least 300 drops to be dispensed)
  • Hygienically harmless
  • Resource-saving
  • Simple dosage
  • Drops are always the same size and therefore dosage can be exact
  • Less expensive therapy costs as content goes further

Pharmaceutical form: eye ointments or gels

Ointments and gels are first and foremost characterized by their long dwell time on the eye. However, because they lead to temporary blurred vision, they are mainly suited to use at night or in situations which are, on the one hand, very burdensome for the eye and, on the other, do not require perfect vision (for example, long flights). People who suffer from a severe chronic form of dry eyes can also choose eye ointments in preference to eye drops, everyday life permitting.
Benefits of this pharmaceutical form at a glance:

  • Long dwell time on the eye
  • Good tolerability: VITA-POS® eye ointment and PARIN-POS® eye ointments are preservative-free

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