Reviewed on 2/7/2022

What Is Tobramycin and How Does It Work?

Tobramycin is a prescription medication used to treat Mild/Moderate or Severe Eye Infection.

  • Tobramycin is available under the following different brand names: Tobrex, Tobramycin Ophth, AKTob.

Dosages of Tobramycin

Adult and pediatric dosage

Tobramycin solution

  • 0.3%

Tobramycin ointment

  • 0.3%

Eye Infection

Adult and pediatric dosage


  • Ointment: Apply ½ inches (1.25 cm) to affected eye(s) every 8-12 hours
  • Solution: 1-2 drops every 4-6 hours; may be increased to ever 1-2 hours during initial 24-48 hours


  • Ointment: Appy ½ inches (1.25 cm) to affected eye(s) every 3-4 hours
  • Solution: 2 drops ever 30-60 minutes, then less frequently after improvement; for Pseudomonas aeruginosa, 2 drops every 5 minutes for 1 hour, then every 30 minutes

Dosage Considerations – Should be Given as Follows: 

  • See "Dosages."

What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Tobramycin?

Common side effects of Tobramycin include:

  • eye itching or redness, 
  • mild burning, stinging, or irritation, 
  • itchy or puffy eyelids, 
  • blurred vision, and
  • eyes may be more sensitivity to light

Serious side effects of Tobramycin include:

  • hives, 
  • difficulty breathing, 
  • swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat, 
  • severe burning, stinging, or irritation after using the medicine, 
  • eye swelling, 
  • redness of the eye, 
  • severe discomfort of the eye, and
  • crusting or drainage from the eye

Rare side effects of Tobramycin include:

  • none 
This is not a complete list of side effects and other serious side effects or health problems may occur as a result of the use of this drug. Call your doctor for medical advice about serious side effects or adverse reactions. You may report side effects or health problems to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.


What causes dry eyes? See Answer

What Other Drugs Interact with Tobramycin?

If your medical doctor is using this medicine to treat your pain, your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them.  Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor, health care provider or pharmacist first.

  • Tobramycin has severe interactions with no other drugs.
  • Tobramycin has serious interactions with no other drugs.
  • Tobramycin has moderate interactions with no other drugs.
  • Tobramycin has minor interactions with no other drugs.

This information does not contain all possible interactions or adverse effects. Visit the RxList Drug Interaction Checker for any drugs interactions. Therefore, before using this drug, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the drugs you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist. Check with your physician if you have health questions or concerns.

What Are Warnings and Precautions for Tobramycin?


  • Hypersensitivity to aminoglycosides or any component of formulation 

Effects of drug abuse

  • None

Short-Term Effects

  • See “What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Tobramycin?”

Long-Term Effects

  • See “What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Tobramycin?”


  • Sensitivity to topically administered aminoglycosides may occur; severity may vary from local effects to generalized reactions; discontinue use if sensitivity reactions occur
  • Monitor serum aminoglycoside concentrations if concurrent systemic aminoglycoside therapy is in progress
  • Concurrency with topical corticosteroids after uncomplicated removal of corneal foreign body; such concurrency may mask clinical signs of bacterial/fungal/viral infections
  • May result in overgrowth of nonsusceptible organisms, including fungi
  • Not for injection into eye

Pregnancy and Lactation

  • Reproduction studies in three types of animals at doses up to thirty-three times normal human systemic dose have revealed no evidence of impaired fertility or harm to the fetus due to drug; there are, however, no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women; because animal studies are not always predictive of human response, drug should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed.
  • Lactation: Because of potential for adverse reactions in nursing infants, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing infant or discontinue drug, taking into account importance of drug to mother.
Medscape. Tobramycin.

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