The objective of this study was to determine the systemic exposure to loteprednol etabonate (LE) following its chronic, ocular instillation. This was a randomized, double-masked, placebo controlled, single center trial in 14 normal volunteers. Subjects were randomly assigned to receive either LE (n=10) or placebo (n=4) and instructed to instill one drop into each eye 8 times daily on Days 0 and 1 and four times daily on Days 2 through 42. Blood levels of loteprednol etabonate (LE) and its major metabolite PJ-91 (delta1 cortienic acid etabonate) in plasma, and circulating plasma cortisol levels were measured during the study. Plasma levels of LE or PJ-91 were below the level of quantitation (1 ng/mL) for all subjects in both treatment groups. Plasma cortisol levels were all within the normal range. Chronic exposure to LE at a concentration and frequency equal to or greater than the intended therapeutic dose does not result in detectable systemic levels or hypothalamic pituitary axis suppression.