Levofloxacin (Oftaquix eye drops)

How does it work?

Oftaquix eye drops contain the active ingredient levofloxacin, which is a type of medicine called a quinolone antibiotic. Antibiotics are used to treat infections caused by bacteria.

Levofloxacin works by killing the bacteria that are causing an infection. It does this by entering the bacterial cells and inhibiting a bacterial enzyme called DNA-gyrase. This enzyme is involved in replicating and repairing the genetic material (DNA) of the bacteria. If this enzyme doesn't work, the bacteria cannot reproduce or repair themselves and this kills the bacteria. This treats the infection.

Oftaquix eye drops are administered into the eye to treat eye infections caused by specific bacteria that can be killed by levofloxacin. Putting the medicine directly into the eye allows the levofloxacin to act locally on the bacteria that are causing the infection.

What is it used for?

  • Bacterial eye infections.

Warning!

  • This medicine is for use in the eye only and must not be taken by mouth.
  • When using the eye drops you should take care to not touch the tip of the dropper or tube to any surface, or to your eye, in order to avoid contaminating the medicine.
  • Oftaquix drops may cause your vision to blur temporarily after you have applied them into your eye. Do not drive or operate machinery until this has worn off.
  • You should not wear contact lenses while you are using Oftaquix eye drops. This is because wearing contact lenses when you have an eye infection can aggravate the condition. You should not wear your contact lenses for 24 hours after you have finished the course of this medicine.
  • You should consult your doctor if symptoms have not improved within two days of using this medicine, or if you get another eye infection.
  • Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, it is important that you finish the course of this antibiotic (usually five days), even if it seems the infection has cleared up. Stopping the course early increases the chance that the infection will come back and that the bacteria will grow resistant to the antibiotic.
  • If you get a skin rash or any other sign of allergic reaction after using this medicine, you should stop using it and consult your doctor immediately.
  • Oftaquix eye drops are sterile until opened. If you have been given unit dose drops, these do not contain a preservative and are intended for single use only. You should use the prescribed number of drops immediately after opening the single dose container and then discard it, even if it still contains some medicine. If you have been given a bottle of Oftaquix eye drops, this contains a preservative and is for multiple uses. However, any medicine that remains in the bottle four weeks after the first opening should be carefully disposed of, as it is likely to be contaminated with germs. You may find it helpful to write the date of first opening on the bottle.

Not to be used in

  • Children under one year of age.
  • Allergy to other quinolone-type antibiotics.

This medicine should not be used if you are allergic to one or any of its ingredients. Please inform your doctor or pharmacist if you have previously experienced such an allergy.

If you feel you have experienced an allergic reaction, stop using this medicine and inform your doctor or pharmacist immediately.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding

Certain medicines should not be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding. However, other medicines may be safely used in pregnancy or breastfeeding providing the benefits to the mother outweigh the risks to the unborn baby. Always inform your doctor if you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, before using any medicine.

  • There is no information available about the safety of this medicine during pregnancy. It should only be used during pregnancy if considered essential by your doctor. Seek medical advice from your doctor.
  • Levofloxacin passes into breast milk, but the manufacturer states that the dose used in Oftaquix eye drops is not expected to have any harmful effects on a nursing infant. However, these eye drops should only be used during breastfeeding if the benefit to the mother outweighs any potential risk to the nursing infant. Seek medical advice from your doctor.

Side effects

Medicines and their possible side effects can affect individual people in different ways. The following are some of the side effects that are known to be associated with this medicine. Just because a side effect is stated here does not mean that all people using this medicine will experience that or any side effect.

Common (affect between 1 in 10 and 1 in 100 people)

  • Burning sensation in the eye.
  • Blurred vision.
  • Stickiness in the eye.

Uncommon (affect between 1 in 100 and 1 in 1000 people)

  • Eye pain or discomfort.
  • Itchy and dry eyes.
  • Redness in the eyes and eyelids.
  • Swelling of the eyelids.
  • Formation of crust on the margin of the eyelid.
  • Dislike of light (photophobia)
  • Runny or stuffy nose.
  • Headache.

Rare (affect between 1 in 1000 and 1 in 10,000 people)

  • Allergic reactions such as skin rash.

Very rare (affect less than 1 in 10,000 people)

  • Swelling and tightness around throat.
  • Anaphylactic allergic reaction.

The side effects listed above may not include all of the side effects reported by the medicine's manufacturer.

For more information about any other possible risks associated with this medicine, please read the information provided with the medicine or consult your doctor or pharmacist.

How can this medicine affect other medicines?

It is important to tell your doctor or pharmacist what medicines you are already taking, including those bought without a prescription and herbal medicines, before you start treatment with this medicine. Similarly, check with your doctor or pharmacist before using any new medicines while using this one, to make sure that the combination is safe.

If you are using other eye drops in combination with Oftaquix, you should administer them at least 15 minutes apart, to prevent the second drop washing away the first. Use eye gels or ointments last.

Levofloxacin eye drops are not expected to affect any other medicines.

Other medicines containing the same active ingredient

Tavanic (not used for eye infections).