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February 6, 1967

Gentamicin Sulfate in External Eye Infections

Author Affiliations

From the Ohio State University College of Medicine (Dr. Magnuson) and Ohio State University Hospitals (Dr. Suie), Columbus.

JAMA. 1967;199(6):427-428. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03120060125030

THE NEW, broad-spectrum antiobiotic, gentamicin sulfate, is of particular interest in the treatment of eye infections. It is active against common staphylococci and streptococci,1,2Diplococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae,3 and numerous species of gram-negative bacteria1-3 including Pseudomonas aeruginosa. In vivo, gentamicin protected rabbit eyes against destruction from experimentally induced pseudomonal infection.4 In one report of clinical use in eye infections,5 a few patients were treated successfully with gentamicin sulfate ophthalmic preparation for infection with Moraxella (diplobacillus of Morax-Axenfeld), Neisseria gonorrhoeae (gonococcus), and Haemophilus aegyptius (Koch-Weeks bacillus).

To study 0.3% gentamicin sulfate ophthalmic drops or ointment in eye infections, we treated 131 patients: 53 with the ointment, 72 with the drops, and 6 with both. Most (118) were treated for one week or less; 11 were treated for 8 to 13 days, and 2 for 20 to 30 days. Concurrent therapy included hot and cold compresses, atropine