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Ophthalmology & Optometry/Pinkeye, allergies, or am I ruining my eyes?


Hi there!
So, first of all, I want to preface this with the fact that I KNOW that everything I've decided to do with my eyes in this situation has been really stupid and possibly dangerous...but maybe you can advise me as to what to do now (other than go to the doctor's, since I'm insurance-less until school starts back up...)

I have absolutely terrible, allergy-ridden, pink-eye prone eyes. They're sensitive and I wear daily, disposable contacts because they get irritated so easily. I get pink-eye once  a year, generally, or once every two years. They always give me drops, though I'm not actually sure they're necessary. Regardless, I have some extra drops that don't expire for a year.

4 weeks ago, my allergies (which severely affect my eyes w/ itchiness) flared up, and I was constantly battling itchiness and watery-ness. One day, I woke up with the classic conjunctivitis signs that didn't dissipate. SO, I decided to use the drops (polymyxin b sulfate and trimethoprim ophthalmic solution usp), rather than go to the doctor. (I know, bad.) I used them according to the instructions for 4 days, things cleared up, so I stopped using them and put my contacts back in. A few days later, the symptoms came back, but I couldn't tell if they were allergies or not. I used Visine, but the itching was so severe and red, that I decided to use the antibiotic drops again.I did this for 2 days, things cleared up, so I decided that maybe I had an infection that hasn't fully gone away. So I started using the drops in the morning, putting my contacts in, then using them before bed when I took my contacts out. I did this for another few days, and then decided it might be a stupid idea, so I stopped.

My eyes have continued to be itchy, but I decided it's just contacts. But sometimes, when they've gotten really itchy over the past few days, I used the drops at night. (This is where everything gets extra stupid). But I woke yesterday morning with the most red, itchy, watery eyes I've ever seen. I got nervous, because I'm worried I've had pinkeye this entire time but I haven't given myself the proper 7-10 days treatment, so it's just been coming back, OR my use of the drops has done something bad to my eyes (super infection? irritated them?).

Basically, I don't know what to do now. I figured I would just literally give myself 7-10 days of the treatment, just wear my glasses, and do the proper dosage of drops, but I've already been really stupid with this process in the past, so I don't know what to do. And I really don't want to go to the doctor if not necessary.

So, sorry for the length of this, but thank you for the help!

Barbara. You are obviously playing doctor aNd self treating and find out nothing is better, maybe worse .  If you don't want to go to the eye doctor perhaps go to the emergency room in the local hospital .  Keep in mind antibiotics only work for bacterial infections.  They won't help for severe allergies , allergic conjunctivitis, or viral infection.    If allergic. You may want to. Try some Zaditor, Naphcon A , or Bepreve  eye drops twice a day  almond with cold compresses every two to three hours.   If your eye are very red, itchy, and puffy you may need topical steroid eye drops.    Hope this helps Dr
  Dr ken ,  

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Any and all questions with regard to ocular ailments, eye diseases as cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, etc , eye and visual sympomatology, eyeglasses, contact lenses, low or subnormal vision, pediatric vision conditions,and special and unique ailments will be discussed.


36 years of clinical experience in opticianry and therapeutic optometry. Still in private practice with special interests in vision conditions, diagnosing and treating ocular ailments, prescibing treatment plans which include medicine, eyeglasses, and contact lenses primarily. Although surgery is not within the realm of my area of expertise, I co-manage many pre and post -op surgical cases which include Lasik and PRK procedures.

New Jersey Society of Optometric Physicians American Optometric Association

B.A.,1968, Hunter College of the City University of New York B.S.,1970, Pennsylvania College of Optometry O.D.,1973, Pennsylvania College of Optometry Therapeutic Pharmaceutical Administration Certification, New Jersey 1992

Awards and Honors
Clinical Efficiency Award, 1973, Pennsylvaania College of Optometry

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