canine cataract quandary
January 5, 2015 7:43 AM   Subscribe

Last fall, my 13-year-old dog had cataract surgery in both eyes. Best money I ever spent, but it was quite a lot! one unexpected expense was the regime of eyedrops, and the advice that he will need daily Flurboprofen drops for the rest of his life. YANMV, but - can I substitute any over-the-counter anti-inflammatory eyedrops for the prescription ones, which cost roughly $1 per drop?

In fact, since anti-itch drops like Zyrtec often sting, I use ordinary saline drops daily myself, and that seems to ward off any inflammation. This would be the most cost-effective solution - would you use it for your old dog?
posted by mmiddle to Pets & Animals (6 answers total)
Best answer: can I substitute any over-the-counter anti-inflammatory eyedrops for the prescription ones, which cost roughly $1 per drop

No. Not unless those anti-inflammatory eyedrops are capable of inhibiting the production of prostaglandins.

This drug is typically given to treat uveitis, which is inflammation of the iris and its supporting structures. If, for example, both of your irises were inflamed following cataract surgery and the doctor prescribed NSAID drops, would you substitute saline? Saline is absolutely not capable of warding off "any inflammation."

Please talk to your vet about options. There are generic preparations of flurbiprofen, though I don't know if this linked product is at the concentration that your vet prescribed.
posted by Seppaku at 8:01 AM on January 5, 2015 [4 favorites]

I wouldn't change a prescription med for an otc one without the vets OK. I would hunt around for a better price for the drops. In many cases veterinary prescriptions can be filled at your local drug store/pharmacy, though it may take them a little while to get it in. . If you are buying the drugs straight from the vets you are probably paying a premium, ask for a prescription and take it around a few places you can most likely get a better price.
posted by wwax at 8:14 AM on January 5, 2015 [4 favorites]

Best answer: Agree with wwax, I had a dog that had prescription eye drops and they happened to be on Walmart's $4 prescription list. They took the Vet's prescription no problem. I also searched the internet for better prices on the dog's prescriptions, which is worth the research because you can save money.
posted by just asking at 8:30 AM on January 5, 2015 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thanks very much! I am paying the Kroger price ($15 for tiny inflexible bottle), but still. The vet is happy to prescribe elsewhere, and if I get that Walmart price - perfect!)
posted by mmiddle at 8:42 AM on January 5, 2015

you might have some success finding a cheaper price with GoodRx.
posted by royalsong at 10:58 AM on January 5, 2015 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: ... rock bottom price is $7-11 - about 1/3 off. Thanks!
posted by mmiddle at 12:18 PM on January 5, 2015

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