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Some helpful info for those with allergy to Glaucoma & other meds & the yellow dye

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  • Some helpful info for those with allergy to Glaucoma & other meds & the yellow dye

    I've had a horrible week due to a delayed hypersensitivity reaction (type IV allergy) to fluorescien (sp?) strips used to check my pressure on Friday. Besides swelling of the lid and eye, redness, terrible stinging, the eyes also felt bone dry. I learned some things this week from the experience and from research on how to avoid this next month when I go back. So, offering you guys some info.

    There ARE ways to check pressure in Glaucoma patients without the dye. If you know you're allergic to the dye, just refuse to allow them to use it and don't budge. If they still insist, leave and find another doctor. If you're afraid you'll give in and then regret it (like me) find someone to take with you who will interject and remind you, in front of the doctor, that you'd better not try it (again).

    There are ophthalmologists who specialize in Glaucoma and they are aware that some people are allergic to the dyes. Some use alternatives, so call ahead and ask what is possible. There is a new gizmo, the Icare Tonometer, that doesn't require any dyes or drops of any kind, but not many offices have that yet. It's super accurate, supposedly, so that's something to look forward to.

    Leiter's Pharmacy can compound just about anything without BAK or without certain other inactive ingredients, so if you can't find a Glaucoma medication you aren't allergic to, contact them. If you get all the instructions for what exactly the doctor needs to do to prescribe the compounded product with them, the doc may readily agree to do that. Shipping is free, anywhere in the U.S., and they can do a 1 month supply at a time (as opposed to most labs that are only sterile enough to be allowed to do a 4-7 day supply). They have a lot of info on their website.

    I've been trying the BAK-free Glaucoma drops and most of them have something about them that doesn't work for me. Alphagan-P didn't work for my pressure and my Glaucoma got significantly worse that month on it. Travatan-Z has something in it I'm sensitive to, maybe the castor oil or sodium hydroxide, but not sure what. Even though Combigan has BAK, it's a much smaller amount than Xalatan and doesn't bother me nearly as much. It's not ideal, since does irritate my eyes and the warnings and precautions for it are pretty serious, but it's now my back-up as I explore alternatives. It does lower my pressure really well. I'm going to check on getting Xalatan compounded without BAK.

    For the misery I was in the day after my last Glaucoma test, due to the fluorescien strips, it helped running a humidifier all day and Similasin Allergy Eye Relief is helping a little plus using my Oasis drops more often than usual. Before I go back to the ophth, or use any new drop, I'm putting some of my Oasis and Similasin drops in the fridge in case I need the coldness due to a reaction. Also, staying home for a couple of days helps. It was a Friday end-of-day appointment. Any wind at all, or air circulation in the car, really inflamed the problem, continuing for a couple of days later. Should have taken a day off work on Monday.

    I hope this is useful info for someone.