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  • Latisse (Bimatoprost Ophthalmic Solution)

    Published Feb. 17, 2019

    What is Latisse?

    Latisse is the brand name for bimatoprost ophthalmic solution, a prescription drug used for cosmetic purposes. This solution is dabbed on the upper eyelash line to enhance eyelash appearance over time, making them grow longer, thicker and darker.

    This same bimatoprost solution was first used as a glaucoma treatment drug (with the brand name Lumigan). Many people using Lumigan for glaucoma found that their eyelashes became longer and more lush. The eyelash-enhancing effect of the active ingredient in bimatoprost solution—called prostaglandin analog—eventually led to the development of Latisse.

    To use Latisse, you must get a prescription from your ophthalmologist. They will check your eye health to make sure you are a good candidate for this cosmetic drug. People who have certain eye problems such as conjunctivitis, macular edema, or uveitis, should not use the drug. Also, because Latisse contains an eye pressure-lowering ingredient, people who use glaucoma medications or other drugs to lower eye pressure need to be monitored by their ophthalmologist regularly while using Latisse.

    What are the side effects of Latisse?

    There are possible side effects from using Latisse (bimatoprost ophthalmic solution) to enhance eyelash growth. They can include red eyes, dry eyes, eyelid irritation and itchiness, and darkening of eyelid skin. These particular side effects will go away when you stop using Latisse. Another possible side effect from using Latisse is having your iris become darker with more brown pigment. This side effect does not go away when you stop using the drug.

    To lower the risk of side effects from Latisse, closely follow the instructions explaining how to use the drug. Some tips to use this drug successfully include the following:

    • If you wear contact lenses, take them out before using Latisse. Once you have applied the drug to your eyelashes, wait 15 minutes before putting your contact lenses back in your eyes.
    • Never reuse the single-use applicator for this drug. Also, to avoid the risk of serious eye infection, do not let the bottle tip touch your eyeball or any other surface like a counter or sink.

    Your ophthalmologist can discuss the risks and benefits of using Latisse to enhance the growth and appearance of eyelashes.