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FML Forte

Last reviewed on RxList: 7/30/2008
Drug Description

FML FORTE®
(fluorometholone) Ophthalmic Suspension, USP 0.25% Sterile

DESCRIPTION

FML FORTE® (fluorometholone ophthalmic suspension 0.25%) sterile ophthalmic suspension is a topical anti-inflammatory product for ophthalmic use.

Chemical Name:

Fluorometholone: 9-Fluoro-11β, 17-dihydroxy-6α-methylpregna-1,4-diene-3,20-dione.

Structural Formula:

FML FORTE® (fluorometholone ophthalmic suspension, USP) Structural Formula Illustration

Contains:

Active: fluorometholone 0.25%. Preservative: benzalkonium chloride 0.005%. Inactives: edetate disodium; polysorbate 80; polyvinyl alcohol 1.4%; purified water; sodium chloride; sodium phosphate, dibasic; sodium phosphate, monobasic; and sodium hydroxide to adjust the pH. FML Forte® (fluorometholone ophthalmic suspension 0.25%) suspension is formulated with a pH from 6.2 to 7.5.

For Consumers

What are the possible side effects of fluorometholone ophthalmic (Flarex, FML Forte Liquifilm, FML Liquifilm, FML S.O.P.)?

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.

Stop using this medication and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • pain behind your eyes, sudden vision changes, severe headache;
  • sudden eye irritation;
  • blurred vision, tunnel vision, eye pain, or seeing halos around lights; or
  • signs of new eye infection, such as swelling, draining, or...
Indications & Dosage

INDICATIONS

FML FORTE® (fluorometholone ophthalmic suspension 0.25%) suspension is indicated for the treatment of corticosteroid-responsive inflammation of the palpebral and bulbar conjunctiva, cornea and anterior segment of the globe.

DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION

Instill one drop into the conjunctival sac two to four times daily. Care should be taken not to discontinue therapy prematurely.

If signs and symptoms fail to improve after two days, the patient should be re-evaluated (see PRECAUTIONS).

The dosing of FML FORTE® (fluorometholone ophthalmic suspension 0.25%) suspension may be reduced, but care should be taken not to discontinue therapy prematurely. In chronic conditions, withdrawal of treatment should be carried out by gradually decreasing the frequency of applications.

HOW SUPPLIED

FML FORTE® (fluorometholone ophthalmic suspension, USP) 0.25% is supplied sterile in opaque white LDPE plastic bottles with droppers with white high impact polystyrene (HIPS) caps as follows:

10 mL in 15 mL bottle - NDC 11980-228-10

5 mL in 10 mL bottle - NDC 11980-228-05

15 mL in 15 mL bottle - NDC 11980-228-15

Note: Store at or below 25°C (77°F); protect from freezing. Shake well before using.

Revised June 2004. Allergan Inc. Irvine, CA 92612, U.S.A. FDA Rev date: 01/10/06

Side Effects & Drug Interactions

SIDE EFFECTS

Adverse reactions include, in decreasing order of frequency, elevation of intraocular pressure (IOP) with possible development of glaucoma and infrequent optic nerve damage, posterior subcapsular cataract formation, and delayed wound healing.

Corticosteroid-containing preparations have also been reported to cause acute anterior uveitis and perforation of the globe. Keratitis, conjunctivitis, corneal ulcers, mydriasis, conjunctival hyperemia, loss of accommodation and ptosis have occasionally been reported following local use of corticosteroids.

The development of secondary ocular infection (bacterial, fungal and viral) has occurred. Fungal and viral infections of the cornea are particularly prone to develop coincidentally with long-term applications of steroids. The possibility of fungal invasion should be considered in any persistent corneal ulceration where steroid treatment has been used. (see WARNINGS).

Other adverse events reported with the use of FML FORTE® (fluorometholone ophthalmic suspension 0.25%) include transient burning and stinging upon instillation, ocular irritation, taste perversion and visual disturbance (blurry vision).

DRUG INTERACTIONS

No information provided.

Warnings & Precautions

WARNINGS

Prolonged use of corticosteroids may result in glaucoma with damage to the optic nerve, defects in visual acuity and fields of vision, and in posterior subcapsular cataract formation. Prolonged use may also suppress the host immune response and thus increase the hazard of secondary ocular infections.

Various ocular diseases and long-term use of topical corticosteroids have been known to cause corneal and scleral thinning. Use of topical corticosteroids in the presence of thin corneal or scleral tissue may lead to perforation.

Acute purulent infections of the eye may be masked or activity enhanced by the presence of corticosteroid medication.

If this product is used for 10 days or longer, intraocular pressure should be routinely monitored even though it may be difficult in children and uncooperative patients. Steroids should be used with caution in the presence of glaucoma. Intraocular pressure should be checked frequently.

The use of steroids after cataract surgery may delay healing and increase the incidence of bleb formation.

Use of ocular steroids may prolong the course and may exacerbate the severity of many viral infections of the eye (including herpes simplex). Employment of a corticosteroid medication in the treatment of patients with a history of herpes simplex requires great caution; frequent slit lamp microscopy is recommended.

PRECAUTIONS

General: The initial prescription and renewal of the medication order beyond 20 milliliters of FML FORTE® (fluorometholone ophthalmic suspension 0.25%) suspension should be made by a physician only after examination of the patient with the aid of magnification, such as slit lamp biomicroscopy and, where appropriate, fluorescein staining. If signs and symptoms fail to improve after two days, the patient should be re-evaluated.

As fungal infections of the cornea are particularly prone to develop coincidentally with long-term local corticosteroid applications, fungal invasion should be suspected in any persistent corneal ulceration where a corticosteroid has been used or is in use. Fungal cultures should be taken when appropriate.

If this product is used for 10 days or longer, intraocular pressure should be monitored (see WARNINGS).

Carcinogenesis, mutagenesis, impairment of fertility: No studies have been conducted in animals or in humans to evaluate the possibility of these effects with fluorometholone.

Pregnancy: Teratogenic effects. Pregnancy Category C: Fluorometholone has been shown to be embryocidal and teratogenic in rabbits when administered in low multiples of the human ocular dose. Fluorometholone was applied ocularly to rabbits daily on days 6-18 of gestation, and dose-related fetal loss and fetal abnormalities including cleft palate, deformed rib cage, anomalous limbs and neural abnormalities such as encephalocele, craniorachischisis, and spina bifida were observed. There are no adequate and well-controlled studies of fluorometholone in pregnant women, and it is not known whether fluorometholone can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman. Fluorometholone should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.

Nursing Mothers: It is not known whether topical ophthalmic administration of corticosteroids could result in sufficient systemic absorption to produce detectable quantities in human milk. Systemically administered corticosteroids appear in human milk and could suppress growth, interfere with endogenous corticosteroid production, or cause other untoward effects. Because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants from fluorometholone, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or to discontinue the drug, taking into account the importance of the drug to the mother.

Pediatric Use: Safety and effectiveness in infants below the age of two years have not been established.

Geriatric Use: No overall differences in safety or effectiveness have been observed between elderly and younger patients.

Overdosage & Contraindications

OVERDOSE

No information provided.

CONTRAINDICATIONS

FML FORTE® (fluorometholone ophthalmic suspension 0.25%) suspension is contraindicated in most viral diseases of the cornea and conjunctiva, including epithelial herpes simplex keratitis (dendritic keratitis), vaccinia, and varicella, and also in mycobacterial infection of the eye and fungal diseases of ocular structures. FML FORTE® (fluorometholone ophthalmic suspension 0.25%) suspension is also contraindicated in individuals with known or suspected hypersensitivity to any of the ingredients of this preparation and to other corticosteroids.

Clinical Pharmacology

CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY

Corticosteroids inhibit the inflammatory response to a variety of inciting agents and probably delay or slow healing. They inhibit the edema, fibrin deposition, capillary dilation, leukocyte migration, capillary proliferation, fibroblast proliferation, deposition of collagen, and scar formation associated with inflammation.

There is no generally accepted explanation for the mechanism of action of ocular corticosteroids. However, corticosteroids are thought to act by the induction of phospholipase A2 inhibitory proteins, collectively called lipocortins. It is postulated that these proteins control the biosynthesis of potent mediators of inflammation such as prostaglandins and leukotrienes by inhibiting the release of their common precursor, arachidonic acid. Arachidonic acid is released from membrane phospholipids by phospholipase A2.

Corticosteroids are capable of producing a rise in intraocular pressure. In clinical studies of documented steroid-responders, fluorometholone demonstrated a significantly longer average time to produce a rise in intraocular pressure than dexamethasone phosphate; however, in a small percentage of individuals a significant rise in intraocular pressure occurred within one week. The ultimate magnitude of the rise was equivalent for both drugs.

Medication Guide

PATIENT INFORMATION

If inflammation or pain persists longer than 48 hours or becomes aggravated, the patient should be advised to discontinue use of the medication and consult a physician.

This product is sterile when packaged. To prevent contamination, care should be taken to avoid touching the bottle tip to eyelids or to any other surface. The use of this bottle by more than one person may spread infection. Keep bottle tightly closed when not in use. Keep out of the reach of children.

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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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