Simpler eye drop taking for the squeamish

A simpler and easier way of taking eye drops is equally effective and safe as the traditional drop directly in the eye method, according to a recent study published in Optometry and Vision Science.

Some patients find it particularly hard to apply eye drops effectively due to physical issues or squeamishness, and this is likely to impact on efficacy.

In this small study in 30 patients, researchers compared clinician administration of timolol eye drops directly into the eye to the method where the patient self-administers the eye drops into the nasal corner of a closed eyelid and then opens the eye to allow the drops to enter the eye and then close it.

No significant difference in eye pressure reduction was found between the two groups. No reported cases of eye infection or irritation were found over a three month follow-up period.

According to the authors the closed lid method offers a more reliable method for administration of eye drops that provides a larger area for instillation and lessens the risk of contamination and patient’s fear for eye drops. This alternative method could potentially benefit patients who struggle with topical eye drop therapy and could result in increased adherence, they say.

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