Skip to main content

Hypromellose ophthalmic

Generic name: hypromellose ophthalmic [ HYE-pro-MEL-ose-off-THAL-mik ]
Brand names: Cellugel, Gonak Hypromellose, Goniosoft, Goniotaire, Goniovisc, ... show all 12 brands
Dosage forms: intraocular solution (2%), ophthalmic solution (-; 2.5%)
Drug class: Ophthalmic lubricants and irrigations

Medically reviewed by on May 22, 2023. Written by Cerner Multum.

What is hypromellose ophthalmic?

Hypromellose is sometimes called hydroxypropyl methylcellulose.

Hypromellose ophthalmic (for the eyes) is used as an eye lubricant to treat dry irritated eyes.

Hypromellose ophthalmic is also used during certain eye surgeries to help maintain the shape of the eye, and to protect the tissues of the eye from injury during the procedure.

Hypromellose ophthalmic is also used during certain eye examinations to protect the cornea (the protective front layer of your eye), and to help determine whether fluid is properly draining from the eye.

Hypromellose ophthalmic may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.


Follow all directions on your medicine label and package. Tell each of your healthcare providers about all your medical conditions, allergies, and all medicines you use.

Before taking this medicine

Tell your doctor if you have ever had glaucoma.

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Do not give hypromellose ophthalmic to a child without medical advice.

How should I use hypromellose ophthalmic?

Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets. Use the medicine exactly as directed.

Wash your hands before using eye medication.

To apply the eye drops: Tilt your head back slightly and pull down your lower eyelid to create a small pocket. Hold the dropper above the eye and squeeze a drop into this pocket. Close your eyes for 1 or 2 minutes.

Use only the number of drops your doctor has prescribed.

Do not touch the tip of the eye dropper or place it directly on your eye. A contaminated dropper can infect your eye, which could lead to serious vision problems.

Do not use the medicine if it looks cloudy or has changed colors.

Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 72 hours, or if they get worse.

Store this medicine at room temperature. Do not freeze. Keep the bottle tightly closed when not in use.

When used during an eye exam or eye surgery, hypromellose ophthalmic is given by a healthcare professional in a clinic setting.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Since hypromellose ophthalmic is used when needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. Skip any missed dose if it's almost time for your next dose. Do not use two doses at one time.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222, especially if anyone has accidentally swallowed the medication.

What should I avoid while using hypromellose ophthalmic?

Do not use while wearing soft contact lenses. A preservative in hypromellose ophthalmic could permanently stain the lenses. Use the medicine at least 15 minutes before inserting your contact lenses.

Hypromellose ophthalmic side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Hypromellose ophthalmic may cause serious side effects. Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • eye redness, itching, or discomfort;

  • vision changes;

  • puffy or droopy eyelids; or

  • a lump or swelling in your eyelid.

Common side effects of hypromellose ophthalmic may include:

  • dry eyes.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Hypromellose ophthalmic dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Eye Dryness/Redness:

Ophthalmic drops: 1 to 2 drops as needed.

Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose ophthalmic 2% intraocular solution is for use as an ophthalmic surgical aid in anterior segment surgery.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Eye Dryness/Redness:

Ophthalmic drops:
>= 6 years: 1 to 2 drops as needed.

The ophthalmic 2% intraocular solution is for use as an ophthalmic surgical aid in anterior segment surgery.

What other drugs will affect hypromellose ophthalmic?

Medicine used in the eyes is not likely to be affected by other drugs you use. But many drugs can interact with each other. Tell each of your healthcare providers about all medicines you use, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.