Bimatoprost is used to treat high pressure inside the eye due to glaucoma (open-angle type) or other eye diseases (e.g., ocular hypertension). Lowering high pressure inside the eye can help prevent blindness. This medication works by regulating the flow of fluid within the eye to maintain a normal pressure.
What is it used for?
- Raised pressure within the eye (ocular hypertension).
- Open angle glaucoma.
How does it work?
- Lumigan eye drops contain the active ingredient bimatoprost, which is a type of medicine called a prostaglandin analogue. It is used to lower pressure within the eyeball.
- The pressure within the eyeball is naturally maintained by a continuous flow of liquid called aqueous humour through the eyeball. Aqueous humour is produced by a part of the eye called the ciliary body. It drains out of the eyeball through channels called the trabecular meshwork. If the outflow of aqueous humour is blocked, the aqueous humour builds up inside the eye, increasing the pressure within the eyeball.
How do I use it?
- Lumigan eye drops come in multi-dose bottles that contain the preservative benzalkonium chloride and in single-dose vials that do not contain a preservative. The multi-dose bottles can be used for four weeks after they are first opened. The single-dose vials are for single use only. They contain enough solution to put one drop in each eye if needed. Any drops remaining in these vials after use should be disposed of and not kept for future use.
- Wash your hands before using the eye drops.
- If you wear contact lenses, you should remove them before putting in these eye drops. You should wait at least 15 minutes after using the drops before putting your contact lenses back in.
- One drop should be put into the eye(s) that needs treating once a day, in the evening. Click here for instructions on how to put in the eye drops.
- Immediately after administering the eye drops, close the eye and press on the tear duct (at the corner of the eye closest to your nose) for about one minute. This is to minimise the amount of medicine that may be absorbed into the bloodstream, which will increase the local effect in the eye and minimise any adverse effects elsewhere in the body.
- Take care to avoid the drops running onto the skin around the eyes, cheeks or other areas of skin, as repeated contact with the skin can result in hair growth in those areas. Wipe off any excess eye drops that run onto your skin.
- If you miss a dose just apply your next dose as usual. Don't use the drops twice in one day to make up for a missed dose.
- You should not exceed the recommended dose, as using the drops more frequently than this can actually make them less effective.
Use with caution in
- Decreased kidney function.
- Moderate to severely decreased liver function.
- Closed angle glaucoma.
- Glaucoma caused by the growth of new blood vessels over the iris (neovascular glaucoma).
- Glaucoma caused by inflammation inside the eye (inflammatory glaucoma).
- Glaucoma present from birth (congenital glaucoma).
- Inflammatory conditions of the eye such as conjunctivitis.
- People with an artificial lens in the eye (pseudophakia).
- People with no lens in the eye (aphakia).
- People with dry eyes or disorders of the cornea.
- People with risk factors for swelling of the back of the eye (cystoid macular oedema), such as a closed or blocked retinal vein or diabetes affecting the eyes (diabetic retinopathy).
- People with a history of a type of eye inflammation called iritis or uveitis.
- People with a history of severe viral eye infections, such as ocular herpes simplex.
- People with a slow heart rate or low blood pressure.
- People with breathing problems such as asthma.
Not to be used in
- This medicine is not recommended for children and adolescents under 18 years of age, as there is no information regarding its safety and effectiveness in this age group.
- 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.
- The safety of this medicine for use during pregnancy has not been established. It should not be used in pregnancy unless considered essential by your doctor. Seek further medical advice from your doctor.
- It is not known if this medicine passes into breast milk after being applied into the eye. The manufacturer states that it is not recommended for women who are breastfeeding. Seek further medical advice from your doctor.
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, it does not mean that all people using this medicine will experience that or any side effect.
Very common (affect more than 1 in 10 people)
- Red eye(s) due to excess blood supply (hyperaemia).
- Growth of eyelashes.
- Eye itching.
Common (affect between 1 in 10 and 1 in 100 people)
- Blurred vision.
- Eye irritation, burning sensation or pain.
- Redness or itching of the eyelid(s).
- Inflammation of the eyelid(s) (blepharitis).
- Increased pigmentation or hair growth on the skin around the eye(s).
- Inflammation of the membrane lining the eye(s), causing pain and redness (conjunctivitis).
- Sensation of something in the eye(s).
- Corneal erosion.
- Eye strain.
- Dry or watery eye(s).
- Dislike of light (photophobia).
- Change in colour of the iris.
- Increased blood pressure (hypertension).
- Disturbances in liver function.
Uncommon (affect between 1 in 100 and 1 in 1000 people)
- Eyelid swelling.
- Eyelid twitching.
- Dry skin around the eye(s).
- Inflammation of the iris (iritis).
- Inflammation of the front parts of the eye(s) (uveitis).
- Swelling of the area at the back of the eye responsible for seeing fine detail (macular oedema).
- Feeling sick.
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?
- You should always tell your doctor or pharmacist what medicines you are already using, 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 more than one type of eye drop you should administer them at least five minutes apart, to prevent the second drop washing away the first. Use eye gels or ointments last.