Glycerin, 50%, was discontinued in the United States in 2004; however, it can be compounded by diluting the 100% solution. This frequently used oral osmotic drug is given over cracked ice to minimize its nauseatingly sweet taste. Glycerin is chiefly converted to glucose, glycogen, and other carbohydrates in the liver. Hyperglycemia and glycosuria can result from the oral administration of the agent. The nonmetabolized sugar isosorbide was preferred in patients with diabetes mellitus but has been discontinued in the United States.
Excerpted from BCSC 2020-2021 series: Section 2 - Fundamentals and Principles of Ophthalmology. For more information and to purchase the entire series, please visit https://www.aao.org/bcsc.