An objective evaluation of eyedrop instillation in patients with glaucoma

Arch Ophthalmol. 2009 Jun;127(6):732-6. doi: 10.1001/archophthalmol.2009.96.


Objectives: To evaluate the performance of patients with ocular hypertension and glaucoma who are experienced in the instillation of topical ocular hypotensive medications.

Methods: We conducted a prospective, open-label study at a single private practice site. We enrolled 139 patients with a diagnosis of glaucoma or ocular hypertension who used 1 or more topical ocular hypotensive medications for at least 6 months and who instilled their own medications. Patients were questioned regarding their use of topical ocular hypotensive medications, and we used a video recording to evaluate patient performance of eyedrop instillation with 2 bottle designs.

Results: Patients reported relatively good performance on eyedrop instillation. One hundred twenty-nine of 139 patients (92.8%) reported no problem putting in their eyedrops, and 86 of 139 (61.9%) believed that they never missed their eye when administering the drops. The proportions of patients who were able to instill a single drop into the eye without touching the bottle to the eye were 14 of 64 (21.9%) with a 15-mL bottle and 36 of 117 (30.8%) with a 2.5-mL bottle.

Conclusions: Under a single direct observation, patients experienced in the use of topical ocular hypotensive agents performed relatively poorly when instilling a single eyedrop into the eye without touching the bottle tip to the eye or the ocular adnexae.

Trial registration: Identifier: NCT00522600.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Topical
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antihypertensive Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Drug Packaging*
  • Female
  • Glaucoma, Open-Angle / drug therapy*
  • Humans
  • Intraocular Pressure / drug effects
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Ocular Hypertension / drug therapy
  • Ophthalmic Solutions / administration & dosage*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Task Performance and Analysis*
  • Tonometry, Ocular
  • Video Recording
  • Young Adult


  • Antihypertensive Agents
  • Ophthalmic Solutions

Associated data