Does Tobramycin expire?
Does Tobramycin expire?
Yes, Tobramycin does expire. This antibiotic is usually available in the form of a solution for eye drops or for the purpose of inhalation. No matter what the type of formulation is, all of them have expiry dates printed on the packaging.
I would strongly not recommend you use Tobramycin liquid solutions once they are past the expiration date because of their instability. In fact, it is not recommended to use Tobramycin eye drops for more than a month once the container is opened and the solution should be discarded.
What are the dangers associated with the use of expired Tobramycin?
Expired Tobramycin ophthalmic solution can become contaminated if not used properly and it generally does not stay as pure as it is after a month of opening the container.
This can result in the worsening of your eye infection as the antibiotic will not actively control the bacterial growth in your infected eye/eyes. I would not recommend you take such a big risk as bacterial infections can cause severe damage to your vision if they are not treated properly.
As far as Tobramycin inhalation solution is concerned, it can also result in therapeutic failure. However, if the drug has undergone chemical degradation, it may cause irritation in your nose or throat.
Make sure to consult your doctor if any such thing happens and avoid using expired medications generally (1).
What to do if you have used expired Tobramycin?
If you have accidentally used expired Tobramycin in your eyes, don’t worry. A single application will not cause you any harm but you should not put more of the expired drug in your eyes.
It can make your infection spread. I would also not suggest you opt for antibiotic eye drops right away if you feel you have an infection. Studies suggest that an infection could be viral and antibacterial eye drops will do you no good as an antibiotic can not protect you against a virus.
This is why you should go to an ophthalmologist for a proper diagnosis and should use only those meds that are prescribed.
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U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Don’t Be Tempted to Use Expired Medicines [Internet]. Silver Spring (MD): U.S. Food and Drug Administration; 2021 [cited 2022 Oct 21]. Available from: https://www.fda.gov/drugs/special-features/dont-be-tempted-use-expired-medicines.