Pregnancy Category: B
ClassificationTherapeutic: ocular agents
Prevention of itching associated with allergic conjunctivitis.
Antagonizes the effects of histamine at H1 receptor sites in the eye; does not bind or inactivate histamine.
Also decreases histamine release from mast cells.
Decreased symptoms of histamine excess including itching, redness, tearing.
Absorption: Minimal systemic absorption follows ophthalmic use.
Metabolism and Excretion: Some conversion to an active carboxylic acid metabolite, which is excreted unchanged by the kidneys.
Half-life: 2 hr (carboxylic acid metabolite).
Time/action profile (antihistaminic effect)
|ophth||3 min||unknown||16 hr|
Contraindicated in: None noted.
Use Cautiously in: Contact lens should not be worn if redness occurs; Obstetric: Use during pregnancy only if clearly needed; Lactation: Use cautiously if breast-feeding; Pediatric: Safe and effective use in children <2 yr has not been established.
Adverse Reactions/Side Effects
Central nervous system
Ear, Eye, Nose, Throat
- eye irritation/burning/stinging/itching
Drug-Drug interactionNone noted.
Oral (Adults) One drop in each eye once daily.
Ophthalmic solution: 0.25%
- Assess signs and symptoms of allergic conjunctivitis (redness, itching, watering) periodically during therapy.
Potential Nursing DiagnosesDeficient knowledge, related to medication regimen (Patient/Family Teaching)
- Ophthalmic: Instill 1 drop into affected eyes twice daily. See for administration guidelines.
- Instruct patient to instill alcaftadine drops as directed. Do not touch dropper to eye or to any surface.
- Advise patient to remove contact lens prior to instillation. Do not use alcaftadine for treatment of irritation related to contact lens. Do not wear contact lens if eyes are red. Contact lens may be reinserted 10 min following instillation.
- Advise female patient to notify health care professional if pregnancy is planned or suspected or if breastfeeding.
- Decrease in ocular itching due to allergic conjunctivitis.