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Levobunolol

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Overview

  • Glaucoma is a potentially devastating eye disease, caused by the buildup of abnormally high pressure in the eye. In a normal eye watery fluid (called aqueous humor) is produced within the eye and drains continuously from the eye. Pressure within the eye builds up if this fluid does not drain properly. This pressure can damage the optic nerve, leading to vision loss.
  • Levobunolol HCl ophthalmic preparations are one of a number of topical medications used to treat glaucoma.
  • Levobunolol is absorbed across the cornea into the front portion of the eye (the anterior segment). It decreases the amount of fluid the eye produces, reducing the pressure. How exactly the drug works, however, is not fully understood.
  • Levobunolol belongs to a class of drugs known as beta-blockers, which affect beta-adrenergic receptors. With the eye, beta-blockers are believed to act on the ciliary body to decrease the amount of aqueous humor produced.
  • Similar to timolol, when levobunolol is applied to one eye an effect may be exerted on the opposite eye through systemic absorption of the drug.
  • Levobunolol 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 drug.

    Brand Names and Other Names

  • This drug is registered for use in humans only.
  • Human formulations: Betagen Liquifilm® (Allergan); AkBeta® (Akorn); Levobunolol ophthalmic solution® (Bausch & Lomb); various generic preparations
  • Veterinary formulations: None

    Uses of Levobunolol

  • Levobunolol is used for various types of glaucoma in both dogs and cats.
  • It may be used in cases of primary glaucoma and secondary glaucoma.

    Precautions and Side Effects

  • While generally safe and effective when prescribed by a veterinarian, levobunolol can potentially cause side effects in some animals.
  • Levobunolol should not be used in animals with known hypersensitivity or allergy to the drug.
  • Because levobunolol is a non-selective beta-blocker, it must be used with caution or avoided in animals with congestive heart failure and certain respiratory conditions, such as bronchitis, asthma and obstructive pulmonary diseases.
  • Levobunolol may induce mild slowing of the heart rate in small patients, especially those under 10 pounds.
  • Levobunolol may interact with other medications. Consult your veterinarian to determine if other drugs your pet is receiving could interact with levobunolol. Such drugs include the oral beta-blocking agents.

    How Levobunolol Is Supplied

  • Levobunolol is available as 0.25% and 0.5% solutions in 2.5 ml, 5 ml, 10 ml and 15 ml bottles.

    Dosing Information

  • Medication should never be administered without first consulting your veterinarian.
  • The usual dose of levobunolol is twice daily. In some cats with glaucoma secondary to chronic eye inflammation, once daily levobunolol may be sufficient to manage their elevated intraocular pressure.
  • The duration of administration depends on the condition being treated, response to the medication and the development of any adverse effects. Glaucoma medications must be giving consistently and on a reliable time schedule. Even if your pet feels better, glaucoma medications should not be stopped unless your veterinarian specifically instructs you to do so.




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