The best eye drops after eye injections are preservative free artificial tears. These can help with any eye surface irritation that the patient may experience after the procedure. This irritation is likely not from the injection itself but the antiseptic solution that is used to prep the eye prior to the procedure.
In order to prevent against eye infections, the retinal specialist will prep the area of injection with a betadine solution. Betadine is an antiseptic solution that is used to disinfect the skin and prevent infection. It contains the active ingredient povidone-iodine, which is a powerful antiseptic that kills a broad spectrum of bacteria, viruses, and fungi. Betadine is commonly used to disinfect the skin before surgical procedures, injections, or other medical procedures that can break the skin. It can also be used to treat minor cuts, scrapes, and burns to prevent infection. Betadine works by releasing iodine when it comes into contact with the skin, which destroys the cell walls of microorganisms and prevents them from reproducing. It has a broad range of antimicrobial activity, making it effective against a wide range of pathogens.
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Patients typically have eye injections for retinal problems and these are specifically referred to as intravitreal injections. The vitreous is a jelly like substance that fills the eye and sits between the lens of the eye and the retina. In the past, ophthalmologists use to give antibiotic eye drops following an eye injection. However, studies have shown that antibiotic eye drops after eye injections do not reduce cases of endophthalmitis. Endophthalmitis is a serious eye infection that is a risk of getting eye injections. It is rare but can happen.
There are some studies to show that using antibiotic eye drops routinely after eye injections may increase resistance to antibiotic medications and thus it is no longer recommended to do so. Most retinal surgeons will recommend that you just use artificial tears after having an eye injection. If you have eye pain, blurry vision, or concerning symptoms after your injection, you should contact your retinal doctor immediately.