• I might have poked or scratched my eye with my nail when removing my contact lenses. Is it safe to use Polysporin eye ointment on the eyeball?


    Question:

    I might have poked or scratched my eye with my nail when removing my contact lenses. Is it safe to use Polysporin eye ointment on the eyeball?


    Answer:

    Antibiotics that are approved for use in the eye, such as the one you listed, are safe to use in the eye. The better question is if this is the appropriate antibiotic to use for a corneal abrasion from a fingernail or contact lens related injury. Very damaging bacteria, such as Pseudomonas, can often be found underneath fingernails and on contact lenses and can cause severe sight-threatening infections. As a result, many ophthalmologists prefer to use topical antibiotics with more broad antibacterial coverage, such as fluoroquinolones, that are better at reducing the risk of developing a corneal ulcer (sore on the front of the eye). If you haven’t done so already, you should see an ophthalmologist who can evaluate your eye and prescribe the appropriate medication if necessary. Make sure that the polysporin you have is for eye use. Polysporin for skin use is not safe for the eye.


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