Ask an Eye M.D. Answer Archive
Is it safe to use Restasis for dry eye? Are there any side effects in long term use? Are punctal plugs a better method?
Restasis is very safe. The side effects included stinging, redness, irritation and blurring. These can occur in short or long term use. Some people stop the medication because of this. Restasis works by decreasing the inflammation in the tear production glands (lacrimal glands) which is thought to be the underlying cause of dry eye in some people. It allows for the patient to make more of their own tears.
Punctal plugs are a different method for treating dry eyes. They work by allowing the eye to retain the tears that are already there by preventing them from flowing out through the tear duct system. Different patients require different treatments. For some, Restasis may be used and for others punctal plugs may be used and in some we use both. Neither treatment can be considered better because they are different and not comparable.
Answered by: Gary Hirshfield, MD
Categories: Eye Conditions
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