User Reviews for Restasis to treat Dry Eye Disease
Restasis has an average rating of 4.4 out of 10 from a total of 160 ratings for the treatment of Dry Eye Disease. 26% of those users who reviewed Restasis reported a positive effect, while 51% reported a negative effect.
“I have been using the vial form of Restasis since about 2013 and have never had any trouble with those. The last time I saw my eye doctor he prescribed the multi-dose bottles and I have yet to get them to work well. The first bottle I used lasted 21 days and the second bottle lasted only 12 days. I'm on the 3rd now and I counted a minute and 56 seconds before the first drop entered my eye (and that was after having the bottle turned upside down for 20 seconds before even holding it over my eye. When I called to complain I was told that because there's a filter in the tip to help with sterilization it might take longer and I shouldn't squeeze the bottle more than lightly. I'm sorry over a minute to instill the first drop is unacceptable.”
“I developed bizarre seizures from this medication. Any intense emotion, such as laughing or enjoying food or getting angry would result in a "hiccup" of sorts where I would my head would reset and I would feel nothing. Felt similar to a brain-zap from psychiatric med withdrawal but even worse. And yes, this also impacted sexual function. Imagine not being able to enjoy anything or feel any significant emotion in any way. This particular side effect continued for about 4 months after stopping the medication. I was terrified it wouldn't, and made me suicidal. Oh, and there was no relief from dry eye, either.”
“I was diagnosed with dry eye disease and MGD. My doc prescribed it and said it would take 3 months to kick in. I took it for almost 3 months and it made my eyes drier than they were before! I stopped taking it. Then my eye lids got really bad. Very swollen and caused by eyes to burn for weeks. It also made my MGD worse! My eyes started to feel better a few months later and still have some side effects of it today, but I wanted to let you know NOT TO TAKE THIS! Just keep up on the artificial tears and start watching your diet! Watch your sugar and coffee and take more vitamin D and B vitamins.”
Frequently asked questions
- Can Restasis and Xiidra be used together?
- What is the difference between Cequa and Restasis?
- How does Xiidra differ from OTC dry eye treatments?
“I have used single dose Restasis vials for over 6 years and have been pleased with this product. I just started using the new multi dose bottle. This design is a disaster. I am very careful using it but I wind up getting many drops on my cheek and excessively large drops in my eyes. I suspect Allergan changed the design because users were using the single vials for two daily doses instead of just one. I would suggest Allergan not pin its hopes on the new multi dose bottle unless they improve the design of this bottle. I will request the single use vials as long as they are available. In the meantime I will be researching other medications. I may just discontinue this medication entirely and rely on artificial tears.”
“My doctor prescribed Restasis as part of a treatment plan for my chronic dry eye, which has caused some damage to my cornea and also deterioration of my vision. I used it twice a day but had to discontinue after 3 weeks because of severe side effects. These included pain, discomfort, feeling of a foreign object and increased sensitivity to light. In other words, it caused an increase in the symptoms it was supposed to treat! The day I stopped using the drops, the side effects diminished, and the day after they disappeared. I was happy to be back to the condition I had had previously. That's the only positive effect of Restasis - realizing how much better you feel NOT using it. I can't imagine for the life of me why this product is on the market and is being prescribed by physicians.”
“I was hoping to find better information here. I’ve been using this for 2+ years routinely, with absolutely no positive experience. When first stated using, all symptoms immediately become worse, which I wrote off as get going accustomed to a new medication. However, once we got past the original introductory phase, I expected to find, at least, moderate improvement. Not the case - absolutely no improvement. Does anyone have another option? I feel like I’ve tried everything, bit my eyes only continue to get worse regardless of all the effort to improve.”
“I read the studies & user reviews and I wonder are doctors getting kick backs from Allergan?! Week 2 of Restasis use my eye is dryer, stings/aches throughout the day, and the dryness and feeling of foreign object in my eye is so bad it wakes me at night. What drug worsens your condition before it gets better and takes months before benefit can be seen? Will I even experience positive effects of the drug or just return to baseline or habituate to this useless drug? Restasis is only approved in the US. Foreign drug administrations don’t consider 15% user improvement as enough to justify it with it bad side effects as a treatment for chronic dry eye or MGD. I expressed all of these concerns to my doc and she says stick with it and now take a steroid eye gel to to help the eyes tolerate the Restasis! I honestly hope that in a few weeks I will have to eat my words but as of this moment based on my own experience, user reviews, limited empirical data in support of this medication’s efficacy I am far from optimistic.”
- What is the difference between Cequa and Restasis?
- Can Restasis and Xiidra be used together?
- How does Xiidra differ from OTC dry eye treatments?
“I have been using Restasis for 2.5 years. Yes it burned at first for the first month but it got so much better after that. About 2 months ago I noticed that the drops were not as effective as they once were. Went to an ophthalmologist and he prescribed me a steroid for 2 weeks —that helped tremendously, but then after that to use cequa. A higher dose of the active ingredient in restasis. My eyes burned so bad. Much worse than they ever did. I went back to restasis, burning continued. Worse than I’ve ever had. I want to rip my eyes out. So I haven’t used anything in a couple weeks but the thera tears and I’m better but not 100%. The dr has suspected Sjögren’s syndrome but they don’t know for sure if that’s my problem.”
“After reading the many reviews that sound really similar to my negative experience, I felt like I needed to enter my own review. My opthamologist prescribed Restasis for my extreme dry eye saying that it could take up to 4 months to start having a positive effect. First, I was shocked at the copay expense of about $500 for a 3 month supply of the daily single dose drops. After six months I told my doctor that I didn't feel any improvement from the drops. She flippantly said to stop taking them then & come back in a year. It made me think that perhaps there was a kick back that had already been paid.”
“I have dry eyes so I was prescribed the Restatasis one week ago. I was told it would take months to really kick in to be effective. The Restatasis caused the side effects of my eyes got bloodshot, teared for no reason and overall a general discomfort. I stopped them today and went back to Systane Ultra and my eyes feel so much better. When it comes to my eyes I'm not messing around with something for months to see if it even works. I do not recommend this drug.”
“Very effective for me, but must be used for at least 4 months to have any chance. Came close to stopping after 3 months. Works by suppressing the immune response to what the body perceives as an attack on the surface of the eye from dry eye. I get it in Canada and US, so not true that only US approves for dry eye. I do reuse the individual vials and get about 3-4 doses per. My cost in either country, with the card, is about $80 per month.”
“I was prescribed this Restasis for dry eye and cataract surgery. Over time (3+mos), my eyes were inflamed, irritated and painful. It also felt like something was poking my eyeball under my eyelid. I wanted to rip out my eyeballs. I stopped the drops and within 2 days, symptoms are almost gone. Eyes feel almost normal. I'll stick to OTC dry eye drops. I used the single use vials. (use a discount card off their website)”
“Have been using Restasis in the vial form for a couple of years. Have had no side effects, no problem putting this vial form in my eyes. I was coming to the end of this prescription. I have a new ophthalmologist and was ordered the Restasis multi dose. This bottle form did not work for me. Could not get the drops to squeeze out and when the drops did squeeze out, it was too late, I already moved the bottle away from my eye and it dropped on my face, therefore was a wasted expensive drop. Sometimes I would squeeze the bottle and the bottle would stay formed in the squeeze position. The bottle just did not work for me. So I’ve had my ophthalmologist prescribe the vial form. I have not gotten these yet but I know they will work much better.”
“My doctor botched my multifocal cataract surgery and convinced me that I have dry eye. Recommended Restasis 4.5 years ago - I have seen no improvement - what a ripoff for what should have been a very simple operation. My eyes were done in Rochester, NY and he was a real con artist.”
“I used Restasis for extreme dry eyes. After 2 years and no relief I gave up. Restasis didn't do a thing! I now use Retaine available on line or at pharmacy. It's new...and works great! No prescription needed...and only about $20 for 30 containers. Use just like Restasis.”
“I've been using Restasis for about a year. My doctor said there is some improvement with my vision, but I still have side effects. I have arthritic hands and squeezing either the single dose or multidose versions is extremely difficult, but the multidose is slightly easier. I even called the company about it. My way around getting the multidose bottle to work better involves taking a sterile syringe needle (ask your doctor) and enlarging the dropper hole. Each bottle barely lasts a month. Now I learned that the multidose bottle is not available, just the singles. No drug store or prescription service has it currently. My doctor also said that a generic version is about to be released in much larger bottles. As for the side effects, my eyes continue to burn and my sinus problems have escalated to a point that I may stop using the medication and go back to using liquid tears 24/7.”
“I have been using Restasis for months combined with Azasite. I have been very pleased with the relief it has given my eyes after decades of dealing with painfully dry eyes. I am lucky to have great insurance. The drops are extremely expensive without insurance or good coverage.”
“Yes, it burns. Get over it. This is the only medication that's an actual SOLUTION, and not just a bandaid on the problem like lubricants. You will suffer for a month, get used to it because it's worth it. Restasis works, if you'd rather complain and not find a solution than go through a month uncomfortable I am speechless. You can not use inflammatory eye drops, it negates restasis. Be prepared for no makeup, and to look bloodshot for a bit. After a cpl months I'm loving the effect Restasis has had on my eyes. Pro-tip: Stick vials in the fridge, when you put a couple drops in each eye place the topper back on. ONE vial will last 3-4 days, that's putting 2 drops in each eye 2x a day. Recommended is 2 vials a day, bullshit.”
“My eyes were so dry I had to pry them open every hour and douse with eye drops trying to sleep. With restasis, I can usually sleep all night now, or only find my eyes are stuck upon awakening in the morning. I also have Graves’ disease, so these dry eyes may be related to that, but for now I find great relief with these drops. I have no side effects, just very slight burning it’s not bothersome at all. I was scared to try them at first, so I only did one eye. Guess which one got better...the one I used restasis on. I’m so glad my insurance is willing to cover them and the copay is $40”
“My eye doctor prescribed Restisis for my severe dry eyes due to Sjogrens disease. I share the opinion that the multi use container is a disaster, the rigid bottle either delivers no drops at all or too much which leaks out of your eyes onto your face. After only two weeks use the bottle feels almost empty, very distressing given the high cost of this product.”
“My mom has been using Restasis for over 12 years. She is now 104 and found out it would cost her $275 for a one month supply. I do not even think it helps her.....I use over the counter eye drops Genteal on her often and they help more and much much more affordable. If you are not a wealthy person, try those.”
“OMG. $457.00 paid for initial script of Restasis multi dose after insurance. $40.00 for each month there after. The bottle is a disaster. Almost impossible to squeeze the drop out. It takes 30 seconds minimum and a great deal of pressure has to be used. Sometimes nothing and other times too much. Wasteful to say the least. How can Allergan charge this much money for something with an extreme design flaw. I really want this to work but I don’t see the vial lasting 30 days. Is the company going to help? Or answer the complaints?”
“I used Restasis with great results for over 8 years. Last week it stopped working and my eyes started hurting worse than ever. Not sure if perhaps pharmacy or the manufacturer sold a contaminated or defective drops. Anyway I went to see my doctor and he suggested I stop Restasis and prescribed something new. Will let you know if they work after a day or two.”
“The new multi dose bottles are horrid!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! My dry eyes due to Sjogrens was under control finally after using the vials for a few years! I am now back to the painful dry eyes, which has also exacerbated my macular degeneration! I am angry about this change that is advancing the loss of my eye sight! To my knowledge there is no way to have the dr increase the prescription. If anyone else has any experience like this please let me know.”
“I am a senior citizen who has been on Restasis for 5 yrs. It is so expensive that using it puts me in the medicare donut hole. The drug company, Allergan, is unwilling to give me assistance in the form of samples and my dr's office gave me two samples one time during the 5 yr. period and after that will not help. I was refused two samples to get me through until Jan 1 when my new insurance year begins. It costs $481.35 for a monthly supply so even though my copay is only $30, I am in the donut hole by August at the latest. Allergan has a racket going on here at the expense of the patient. It's not affordable even though it's effective. Totally unfair, corrupt company.”
“I use restasis in the vial form. Twist off the cap and squeeze out. I put the rest of the vial in the frigde to use at night. I've been on restasis for years with no side effects or problems. I've been to the opthamologist for checkups and he has never said there have been any issues. After many many years I do wonder how much good it is doing but will continue.”
“I have used Restasis for about a year now and have seen almost no progress. For most of my life I've had red and bothersome eyes. After trying various eye drops, my doctor recommended Restasis. He said it typically takes 3 to 6 months for it to really kick in but it never did kick in. When I put the drops in it burns my eyes for the first 30 - 40 minutes. I've talked with my doctor about this and he said it is normal but should go away after some time, but it hasn't. Every year around spring time my eyes get terrible irritated and this year has been the same (maybe even worse than other years) even though I've been using Restasis for a year now. The only difference I notice was for the first couple weeks, but now I'm ready to move on.”
“My eyes are so sensitive using Restasis for dry eye that I have to cover my eyes with my hands and use sunglasses at all times or I can’t go outside. The pain is nearly extreme every time I use it so I’m going to stop. I don’t care how expensive it was! I have the bottle and they said it was expensive. I just can’t use it anymore without so much pain and sensitivity to light. It was prescribed after surgery with my Salzman‘s disease which is nodules on the cornea from nerve damage. I can see fine without the Restasis but not well with it ...so I will use an eyedrop that is meant for dry eye instead: vials of Refresh because those work very well and they’re not loaded with preservatives. Enough for a month is $15 and you can use a vile three or four times each.”
This information is NOT intended to endorse any particular medication. While these reviews might be helpful, they are not a substitute for the expertise, knowledge and judgement of healthcare practitioners.
Learn more about Dry Eye Disease
Symptoms and treatments
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- Drug class: ophthalmic anti-inflammatory agents
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