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Are Retaine Eyedrops worth the Money?

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  • Are Retaine Eyedrops worth the Money?

    Hi all,

    Restaine drops seem to be the ones that are recommended for MGD- both my doctor recommended it, and Dr. Latkany recommends in his book. However, are they worth the expense? They seem quite pricey- you get 30 vials for 19 bucks.

    A few more questions:

    A. Can I get insurance to cover the Retaine drops as a medical necessity?

    B. Can I use one 'preservative free' vial multiple times per day? Or do I have to discard instantly? (As vials contain more than 1-2 drops generally, it feels wasteful to throw out the remainder)

    C. Are Retaine drops generally worth the money overall?

  • #2
    I find any (including Retaine MGD) artificial tear eye drops to not work at all. Also, artificial tear eye drops do not cure the underlying disease, but only attempts to provide temporary relief. You migth want to look at curing your underlying MGD first. This can be in the form of Xiidra, Restasis, IPL and LipiFlow.


    • #3
      Retaine MGD did work a little better for me than other artificial tears not specifically for MGD. But personally what literally got me through my worst severe dry eye years was Genteal Severe Dry Eye Gel. It gave me a moist, soothing feeling that nothing else could, and lasted a long time in the eyes:

      Regarding your other questions:

      A. Every insurance is different, but most I’ have seen in the U.S. do not cover OTC drops. If you have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) where you put pre-tax monies away, often you can get reimbursement from these funds by submitting the receipt.

      B. Several of us in this forum use the single use vials multiple times over a few days. Just make sure to recap it (you can use the cap from another brand vial, if the vial is not the type you can recap), and I typically also put it in the refrigerator during warmer weather.

      C. Different drops work for different people. You’ need to try it to see. In general, for most people there are no magic drops. If there is a Bed, Bath, and Beyond near you, I believe they carry Retaine MGD. You can use their $5 off $15 or 20% off one item coupons (including expired ones) on the drops, in addition to if there are any current manufacturing coupons.
      Last edited by Hokucat; 25-Jun-2018, 00:36.


      • #4
        I agree with Hokucat. Genteal Severe Dry Eye Gel worked best for me when I had virtually no tear film, although I think it's designed more for aqueous deficient dry eye. Retaine MGD didn't work for me at all, even after my MGD improved from severe to moderate. But I think some patients do love it. It's worth it to buy one package and give it a try, or see if your doctor's office can give you samples.

        Like Hokucat said, you can definitely recap the single use vials to use them again, depending on the severity of your condition one or two vials might last you all day if you recap it. But I personally wouldn't re-use them over a 12 hour period to prevent risk of infection. Some vials can't be recapped, like Systane Ultra which I use. Therefore, I carry around a little Altoids (mints) case in my pocket (a tin case which I've emptied of the mints and cleaned) and actually put my unopened drops in there and carry them around in my pocket. I feel like it's more likely to prevent contamination than just sitting in my pocket where there might be lint and other contaminants.