Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) Eye Preparations

Medication Information Leaflet

What is this medication for?

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are a group of medications used to treat pain and to reduce inflammation. NSAIDs eye drops are commonly used in inflammatory eye conditions. They are given before and/or after eye surgeries to prevent or to reduce inflammation and swelling. They can also be given in allergic eye conditions for temporary itch relief.

Examples of NSAIDs eye preparations (brand names)
Ketorolac tromethamine (Acular)
Nepafenac (Nevanac)

How should I take/use this medication?

  • Proper use of eye drop

    • Wash your hands with soap and water, and read the instructions on the label.

    • Shake the bottle.

    • Tilt your head backwards and look up.

    • Gently pull the lower eyelid down to form a pocket and squeeze the bottle to apply one drop into your eye. To prevent the tip of the bottle from getting dirty, make sure the tip does not touch the eye or any other surface.

    • Keep your eyes closed and press down gently on the inner corner of your eye for 1 to 2 minutes to allow the medicine to be absorbed.

    • If you need to use more than 1 drop of medicine, or if you are using another type of eye drop, wait at least 5 to 10 minutes before applying the next eye drop. This is to prevent the first drop of medicine from being washed away by the second drop of medicine before it has time to work. This also prevents any medicine interactions between different eye drops.

    • Click on this link for a step-by-step guide on how to apply eye drops


  • Do not stop using your medication without checking with your healthcare professional.

What should I do if I forget to take/use this medication?

If you forget to use a dose, use it as soon as you remember. Then use your next dose at the usual time. Do not use two doses to make up for the missed dose.

What precautions should I take?

Inform your healthcare professional if:

  • You are allergic to this medication or any of the other ingredients of this medication.

  • You are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding.

  • You are taking any other medications, including supplements, traditional medications, and herbal remedies.

  • You have a history of asthma.

  • You are using any other eye preparations.

What are some common side-effects of this medication?

  • Eye stinging or burning sensation

  • Eye redness

  • Eye itch

  • Tearing

  • Headache

  • Slow down wound healing

These symptoms are usually mild and will go away after sometime. Check with your healthcare professional if these conditions are severe or do not improve.

What are some rare but serious side-effects that I need to seek medical advice immediately?

The symptoms of a drug allergy include one or more of the following:

  • Swollen face/eyes/lips/tongue

  • Difficulty in breathing

  • Itchy skin rashes around the eyes or over the whole body

If you experience any of these symptoms, you should stop your medication and see your healthcare professional immediately.

How should I store this medication?

  • Store in a cool and dry place and away from direct sunlight.

  • Record the date opened on the eye drop bottle. Discard this medication one month after opening.

  • Keep this medication away from children.

How should I throw away this medication safely?

Pack this medication into a black trash bag and seal it tightly before throwing it into the rubbish chute or bin.


Please take note that the above is not a complete list of all possible side effects. If you have any concerns about your medication or if you have other side effects that you think are caused by this medication, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

If you take more than the recommended dose, please seek medical advice immediately. The information provided on this page does not replace information from your healthcare professional. Please consult your healthcare professional for more information.

This article is jointly developed by members of the National Medication Information workgroup. The workgroup consists of cluster partners (National Healthcare Group, National University Health System and SingHealth), community pharmacies (Guardian, Unity and Watsons) and Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore. The content does not reflect drug availability and supply information in pharmacies and healthcare institutions. You are advised to check with the respective institutions for such information.

Last updated on Dec 2022

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