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Ketorolac Ophthalmic Solution (Acular®)

By: Dr. Rhea Morgan

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  • Ketorolac tromethamine is a topical drug used to treat certain kinds of inflammation within the eye.
  • Ketorolac inhibits the production of prostaglandins. Inhibiting this hormone helps decrease the inflammatory response in the eye.
  • Ketorolac belongs to a class of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Ketorolac is a prescription drug and can only be obtained from a veterinarian or by prescription from a veterinarian.
  • This drug is not approved for use in animals by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), but it is prescribed legally by veterinarians as an extra-label.

    Brand Names and Other Names

  • This drug is registered for use in humans only.
  • Human formulations: Acular® 0.5% (Allergan)
  • Veterinary formulations: None

    Uses of Ketorolac

  • Ketorolac is used in the treatment of certain types of anterior uveitis and iritis.
  • It is particularly useful in the control of chronic uveitis where long-term usage of topical corticosteroids may produce undesirable side effects. Examples include chronic anterior uveitis in cats, lens-induced uveitis in dogs, and any chronic uveitis in animals with diabetes mellitus.
  • Ketorolac may also be used as a pre-operative and post-operative anti-inflammatory agent, especially to combat uveitis associated with eye surgery.
  • Ketorolac has been widely used for treating seasonal allergic conjunctivitis in people and may have similar benefits in cats and dogs.

    Precautions and Side Effects

  • While generally safe and effective when prescribed by a veterinarian, ketorolac can cause side effects in some animals.
  • Ketorolac should not be used in animals with known hypersensitivity or allergy to the drug, or to any of the topical or systemic NSAIDs.
  • With any NSAID, there is the potential for increased bleeding due to their affect on platelet aggregation.
  • The drug should not be used in the presence of an eye hemorrhage or clotting abnormalities. It may potentially increase bleeding tendencies during eye surgery when used preoperatively.
  • Ketorolac delays wound healing and should be avoided if corneal ulceration is present. It should be used cautiously during the active wound-healing phase following eye surgery.
  • It should not be used in cases of glaucoma, and pressure within the eye should be monitored carefully after administration.
  • Ketorolac may interact with other medications. Consult your veterinarian to determine if other drugs your pet is taking could interact with ketorolac. Such drugs may include corticosteroids.

    How Ketorolac Is Supplied

  • Ketorolac is available as a 0.5% solution in 3 ml, 5 ml and 10 ml bottles.

    Dosing Information

  • Medication should never be administered without first consulting your veterinarian.
  • Ketorolac is usually administered 2 to 3 times daily for the treatment of active uveitis or conjunctivitis, and 1 to 2 times daily for the control of chronic uveitis.
  • As an adjunctive therapy to intraocular surgery, ketorolac may be administered 2 to 3 times daily over the two days prior to surgery, or for 2 to 3 doses just prior to surgery. It may then be continued for several days after surgery.
  • The duration of administration depends on the condition being treated, response to the medication, and the development of any adverse effects.

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