Are Pre-Op Antibiotics Necessary Prior to Intravitreal Injection?

August 27, 2009

A small study reports that preoperative antibiotic drops are not necessary prior to intravitreal injection.  Topical povidone-iodine is sufficient.  In the study of 273 injections, approximately half were treated with topical antibiotics 3 days prior to surgery.  All patients received povidone-iodine prior to injection.  Bacterial cultures were obtained just prior to injection and after povidone-iodine instillation.

In those that used antibiotics, fewer bacterial cultures were positive compared to the no antibiotic group.  There was no difference, however, between the two groups after povidone-iodine instillation.

I have been using antibiotic drops prior to intravitreal injections for years.  What do you use?

Randall V. Wong, M.D.




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