Eye Tips

Can your medication affect your eyes?

The simples answer is: yes! Many of the commonly prescribed medications can have affect on your eye health. Adverse effects of medications may be classified into three categories:

  • quantity of vision
    - blurry vision, focusing difficulties
  • quality of vision
    - glare, light sensitivity, light-dark adaptation
  • development of ocular disorders
    - development of cataracts, retinal problems, macular problems and glaucoma
As opposed to the first two categories, the effects of the last category are potentially mores serious and can pose a greater threat to vision. However, acute side effects of medications usually resolve when the dosage is reduced or the agent is discontinued.

The list of medications that effect vision and ocular health include: antihistamines, corticosteroids, cardiovascular agents, antidepressants and antianxiety agents, retinoids, HRT medications, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, some antibiotics and many others.

It is important to recognize the importance of eye examinations. Many patients who take long-term medications come between twice to four times per year to assure that the medications are not causing adverse reactions and they have optimal ocular health. Please discuss the need for more frequent visits to our office with either your primary physician and/or one of our wonderful optometrists.