The effect of nebulized bronchodilator therapy on intraocular pressures in patients with glaucoma

Chest. 1988 Apr;93(4):739-41. doi: 10.1378/chest.93.4.739.


A controlled double-blind crossover study of ocular complications associated with nebulized ipratropium bromide and salbutamol therapy for respiratory distress was undertaken in 46 chronic bronchitis patients. There was no significant rise in intraocular pressure or change in anterior chamber angle in patients with open-angle glaucoma, narrow-angle glaucoma or control subjects following treatment with either drug. However, when the two drugs were used in combination, intraocular pressure rose in patients with narrow-angle glaucoma but not in patients with open-angle glaucoma or in control subjects. Transient angle closure was seen in five of these patients. Intraocular pressures did not rise when swimming goggles were used to protect the eyes or when antiglaucoma treatment was continued. Nebulized bronchodilator therapy is safe in nonglaucomatous patients and those with open-angle glaucoma. Ocular complications can follow combined ipratropium bromide and salbutamol nebulization in patients with narrow-angle glaucoma, but can be prevented by using the drugs separately, protecting the eyes and ensuring continued antiglaucoma measures.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Intranasal
  • Aerosols
  • Aged
  • Albuterol / therapeutic use
  • Albuterol / toxicity*
  • Atropine Derivatives / toxicity*
  • Bronchitis / complications
  • Bronchitis / drug therapy*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Female
  • Glaucoma / complications
  • Glaucoma / physiopathology*
  • Humans
  • Intraocular Pressure / drug effects*
  • Ipratropium / therapeutic use
  • Ipratropium / toxicity*
  • Male
  • Risk Factors


  • Aerosols
  • Atropine Derivatives
  • Ipratropium
  • Albuterol