Pilocarpine: Uses, Side Effects

Pilocarpine reduces the amount of fluid in the eye, which decreases pressure inside the eye.

Pilocarpine ophthalmic (for the eyes) is used to treat glaucoma or ocular hypertension (high pressure inside the eye).

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

Important Information

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to pilocarpine, or if you have uveitis or pupillary block glaucoma.

Before using pilocarpine ophthalmic, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs.

Pilocarpine can cause side effects that can make it harder for you to see at night or in low light. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be able to see clearly.

Do not allow the dropper tip to touch any surface, including the eyes or hands. If the dropper becomes contaminated it could cause an infection in your eye, which can lead to vision loss or serious damage to the eye.

Avoid using any other eye medications your doctor has not prescribed.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to pilocarpine, or if you have uveitis or pupillary block glaucoma.

Before using pilocarpine ophthalmic, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs.

FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

It is not known whether pilocarpine ophthalmic passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Side effects

Stop using pilocarpine and get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • severe stinging, burning, swelling, or redness of your eye;
  • vision changes;
  • eye pain or increased watering; or
  • crusting or drainage around your eye.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • mild burning, stinging, or discomfort of your eyes;
  • blurred vision; or
  • trouble seeing in dark light.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect.

What other drugs will affect pilocarpine?

There may be other drugs that can interact with pilocarpine ophthalmic. Tell your doctor about all your prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.


Keyword: pilocarpine.

* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.