Skip to main content

Bacitracin and Polymyxin B (Ophthalmic)

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Sep 20, 2020.


(bas i TRAY sin & pol i MIKS in bee)

Index Terms

  • Polymyxin B and Bacitracin

Dosage Forms

Excipient information presented when available (limited, particularly for generics); consult specific product labeling.

Ointment, Ophthalmic:

Polycin: Bacitracin 500 units and polymyxin B 10,000 units per g (3.5 g)

Generic: Bacitracin 500 units and polymyxin B 10,000 units per g (3.5 g)

Ointment, Ophthalmic [preservative free]:

AK-Poly-Bac: Bacitracin 500 units and polymyxin B 10,000 units per g (3.5 g)

Brand Names: U.S.

  • AK-Poly-Bac
  • Polycin

Pharmacologic Category

  • Antibiotic, Ophthalmic


See individual agents.


Insignificant from intact skin or mucous membrane

Use: Labeled Indications

Superficial ocular infections: Treatment of superficial eye infections caused by susceptible organisms.


Hypersensitivity to bacitracin, polymyxin B, or any component of the formulation

Dosing: Adult

Superficial ocular infections: Ophthalmic: Apply a thin strip to affected eye(s) every 3 to 4 hours for 7 to 10 days.

Dosing: Geriatric

Refer to adult dosing.

Dosing: Pediatric

Conjunctivitis: Infants, Children, and Adolescents: Ophthalmic: Apply to affected eye(s) 4 times daily (Giggliotti 1984; Wald 1997)


Ophthalmic: For topical ophthalmic use only; apply directly to conjunctival sac; avoid gross contamination of ointment during application.

Drug Interactions

There are no known significant interactions.

Adverse Reactions

The following adverse drug reactions and incidences are derived from product labeling unless otherwise specified. See individual agents. Frequency not defined.

Hypersensitivity: Anaphylaxis

Ophthalmic: Burning sensation of eyes, conjunctival erythema, eye pruritus, swelling of eye

Pregnancy Risk Factor C Pregnancy Considerations

Animal reproduction studies have not been conducted with this combination.

Patient Education

What is this drug used for?

• It is used to treat eye infections.

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

• Vision changes

• Eye pain

• Severe eye irritation

• Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Note: This is not a comprehensive list of all side effects. Talk to your doctor if you have questions.

Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a limited summary of general information about the medicine's uses from the patient education leaflet and is not intended to be comprehensive. This limited summary does NOT include all information available about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. For a more detailed summary of information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine, please speak with your healthcare provider and review the entire patient education leaflet.

Frequently asked questions

Further information

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