Polycin B ointment

Generic Name: bacitracin/polymyxin (BAS-i-TRAY-sin/POL-ee-MIX-in)
Brand Name: Polycin B

Polycin B ointment is used for:

Treating eye infections caused by certain bacteria.

Polycin B ointment is an antibiotic. It works by slowing the growth of, or killing, sensitive bacteria on the eye.

Do NOT use Polycin B ointment if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Polycin B ointment

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Slideshow: 2014 Update: First Time Brand-to-Generic Switches

Before using Polycin B ointment:

Some medical conditions may interact with Polycin B ointment. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have a wound at the application site

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Polycin B ointment. Because little, if any, of Polycin B ointment is absorbed into the blood, the risk of it interacting with another medicine is low.

Ask your health care provider if Polycin B ointment may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use Polycin B ointment:

Use Polycin B ointment as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Polycin B ointment should only be used around the eye or in the eye.
  • To use Polycin B ointment in the eye, first, wash your hands. Using your index finger, pull the lower eyelid away from your eye to form a pouch. Squeeze a thin strip of ointment into the pouch. After using Polycin B ointment, gently close your eyes for 1 to 2 minutes. Wash your hands to remove any medicine that may be on them. Wipe the applicator tip with a clean, dry tissue.
  • To prevent germs from contaminating your medicine, do not touch the applicator tip to any surface, including the eye. Keep the container tightly closed.
  • Do not wear contact lenses while you are using Polycin B ointment. Take care of your contact lenses as directed by the manufacturer. Check with your doctor before you use them.
  • To prevent reinfection, wash your hands before and after using Polycin B ointment.
  • To clear up your infection completely, use Polycin B ointment for the full course of treatment. Keep using it even if you feel better in a few days.
  • If you miss a dose of Polycin B ointment, use it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not use 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Polycin B ointment.

Important safety information:

  • Polycin B ointment may cause blurred vision. Use Polycin B ointment with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks if you cannot see clearly.
  • Polycin B ointment only works against bacteria; it does not treat viral infections.
  • Be sure to use Polycin B ointment for the full course of treatment. If you do not, the medicine may not clear up your infection completely. The bacteria could also become less sensitive to this or other medicines. This could make the infection harder to treat in the future.
  • Long-term or repeated use of Polycin B ointment may cause a second infection. Tell your doctor if signs of a second infection occur. Your medicine may need to be changed to treat this.
  • If your symptoms do not get better within a few days or if they get worse, check with your doctor.
  • Do not use Polycin B ointment for future eye problems unless directed by your doctor.
  • Polycin B ointment should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN; safety and effectiveness in children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using Polycin B ointment while you are pregnant. It is not known if Polycin B ointment is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Polycin B ointment.

Possible side effects of Polycin B ointment:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Blurred vision; mild burning, irritation, or stinging.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); changes in vision; continued redness, burning, or itching; eye pain or swelling.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of Polycin B ointment:

Store Polycin B ointment at room temperature, between 59 and 77 degrees F (15 and 25 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Keep Polycin B ointment out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Polycin B ointment, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Polycin B ointment is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take Polycin B ointment or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about Polycin B ointment. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to Polycin B ointment. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using Polycin B ointment.

Issue Date: July 2, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.001
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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