Fusidic acid eye drops

Authored by Helen Allen, 13 Dec 2016

Patient is a certified member of
The Information Standard

Reviewed by:
Dr John Cox, 13 Dec 2016

Use fusidic acid eye drops twice a day, in the morning and the evening.

To ensure that all the infection has gone, continue to use the drops for a further two days after your eye appears normal.

Your vision may become slightly blurred for a short while after using the drops. If so, do not drive and do not use tools or machines until you can see clearly again.

Do not wear contact lenses until your symptoms have completely gone.
Type of medicineAnti-infective eye drops
Used forTreatment of eye infections in adults and children
Available asEye drops

Fusidic acid eye drops are prescribed for eye infections caused by germs called staphylococcal bacteria. The drops kill the germs which are causing the infection.

Eye infections are a common cause of conjunctivitis. In conjunctivitis, your eye becomes inflamed, feels gritty, and may water more than usual. The white of your eye may look red, and your eyelids may become swollen and stuck together with a discharge when you wake up in the morning. Only one eye may be infected to begin with, but it often spreads to both eyes. Most cases of infective conjunctivitis clear within a week or so without treatment. For more severe infections, or for infections which do not clear on their own, an antibiotic eye drop such as fusidic acid is helpful.

Some medicines are not suitable for people with certain conditions, and sometimes a medicine can only be used if extra care is taken. For these reasons, before you start using fusidic acid eye drops it is important that your doctor knows:

  • If you are pregnant or breast-feeding.
  • If you have ever had an allergic reaction to a medicine, or to any other eye drops.
  • If you are taking or using any other medicines. This includes any medicines you are taking which are available to buy without a prescription, as well as herbal and complementary medicines.

Before you start the treatment, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet from the pack. It will give you more information about the drops and will provide you with a full list of any side-effects which you may experience from using them. If your eyes have an obvious discharge or 'crust', it can help if you bathe them with cool clean water before using the drops.

  1. Wash your hands before you use the drops.
  2. Remove the cap from the tube.
  3. Tilt your head back a little and gently pull the lower lid of your eye out to form a pocket.
  4. Hold the tube upside down near to your eye. Try not to touch your eye as you do this.
  5. Gently squeeze the tube to release one drop into the pocket created by your lower eyelid. Only use a second drop if the first drop missed going into your eye.
  6. Close your eye for a minute or two, and press gently on the side of your nose where the corner of your eye meets your nose. This helps to stop the drop from draining away and keeps it in your eye.
  7. Repeat the process in your other eye if you have been asked to use the drops in both eyes.
  8. Replace the tube cap.
  • Fusidic acid eye drops are supplied as a gel in a tube. As the drop of gel enters your eye, it will become more liquid.
  • Use the drops twice a day, in the morning and the evening (unless you have been told otherwise by your doctor). Try not to miss any doses. If you forget to put the drops in on time, do it as soon as you remember.
  • When you first put the drops into your eye, they may cause blurred vision. This should quickly clear, but make sure you can see clearly before you drive and before using machines or tools.
  • Your eye should start to feel better within a few days. Even when your eye appears normal again, there may still be some germs (bacteria) present. It is important to continue to use the drops for a further two days once your eye appears normal. This will help to make sure that all the germs have been killed.
  • Take care to avoid spreading the infection from one eye to the other, and to other members of your family. Washing your hands regularly (particularly after touching your eyes), and not sharing towels or pillows will help to prevent the infection from spreading.
  • If the tip of the tube touches your eye(s) when putting the drops in, it is a good idea to squeeze out two or three drops straightaway on to some tissue and rinse the tip with salt water.
  • Eye infections can cause your eyes to become more sensitive to sunlight than usual. Wearing sunglasses may help to prevent this.
  • If you are using any other eye drops or eye ointments, leave at least five minutes between applying each preparation. This is to prevent more liquid going into your eye than it can handle. Otherwise the drops will overflow from your eye and not have the intended effect.
  • If you normally wear contact lenses, please wear your spectacles instead until your symptoms have completely gone. Wait for 24 hours after the last dose of eye drops before using your lenses again. There are two reasons for this advice - you should not wear lenses while your eyes are inflamed, and the ingredients of the eye drops can damage some contact lenses.
  • If you feel your infection is no better after a week, make another appointment to see your doctor for advice. If you feel your symptoms are becoming worse despite using the drops, you should arrange to see your doctor for advice straightaway. In particular, see your doctor again if your eye becomes painful, if light starts to hurt your eyes, or if your sight is affected.

Along with their useful effects, most medicines can cause unwanted side-effects although not everyone experiences them. The table below contains the most common ones associated with fusidic acid eye drops. The best place to find a full list of the side-effects which can be associated with your medicine, is from the manufacturer's printed information leaflet supplied with the drops. Alternatively, you can find an example of a manufacturer's information leaflet in the reference section below. Speak with your doctor or pharmacist if any of the following continue or become troublesome.

Common side-effects of fusidic acid eye drops (these affect less than 1 in 10 people)
What can I do if I experience this?
Dry eyes; mild irritation, burning, or itchingIf this continues or becomes severe, speak with your doctor
Blurred visionThis should soon pass, but do not drive and do not use tools or machines while affected

Occasionally people can be allergic to eye drops, particularly when the eye drops contain a preservative. If you notice a rash around your eyes, or any swelling or itching, contact a doctor for advice. If you experience any other symptoms which you think may be due to the eye drops, speak with your doctor or pharmacist for further advice.

  • Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
  • Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.
  • Throw away the tube after you have finished your course of treatment, even if there is some gel left. Do not keep opened tubes to use later, as eye drops must not be used if the container has been opened for longer than four weeks.

If you suspect that someone has swallowed some of this medicine, contact the accident and emergency department of your local hospital for advice

If you buy any medicines check with a pharmacist that they are safe to use with your prescribed medicines.

If you are having an operation or dental treatment, tell the person carrying out the treatment which medicines you are using.

This medicine is for you. Never give it to other people even if their condition appears to be the same as yours.

Do not keep out-of-date or unwanted medicines. Take them to your local pharmacy which will dispose of them for you.

If you have any questions about this medicine ask your pharmacist.

Further reading and references

  • Manufacturer's PIL, Fusidic Acid 1% Viscous Eye Drops; Concordia International, The electronic Medicines Compendium. Dated February 2014.

  • British National Formulary; 72nd Edition (Sep 2016) British Medical Association and Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, London

I was worried that perhaps something must be up with my little girl’s vision. At the age of 3, I noticed that she was struggling to see some things. But I didn’t care it that much. She usually sits...

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