American Academy of Ophthalmology

View all recommendations from this society

Released February 21, 2013

Don’t routinely provide antibiotics before or after intravitreal injections.

The routine use of antibiotics before or after intravitreal injections is unnecessary because research has shown that topical antibiotics don’t prevent the occurrence of eye infection. The risks of antibiotic eye drops include allergic reactions. The overuse and repeated exposure to antibiotics can lead to the emergence of bacteria that don’t respond readily to available treatments. Routine antisepsis is appropriate and important for prevention of eye infection.

These items are provided solely for informational purposes and are not intended as a substitute for consultation with a medical professional. Patients with any specific questions about items on this list or their individual situation should consult their ophthalmologist.

How The List Was Created

The American Academy of Ophthalmology’s Medical Director of Health Policy and Health Policy Committee led the Academy’s list development process. Members of the Health Policy Committee initially identified potential recommendations based on relevance, appropriateness and potential for improvement and efficiency. Through society notifications and newsletter notices, other ophthalmic organizations and subspecialty societies and members were invited to offer feedback and recommend ideas to be included in the final recommendations. Health Policy Committee members and the Medical Director of Health Policy reviewed the ideas and supporting evidence, and ranked them in order of potential impact. The top five recommendations were presented to the Academy’s Board of Trustees for approval.

The American Academy of Ophthalmology’s disclosure and conflict of interest policy can be found at


American Academy of Ophthalmology, Practicing Ophthalmologists Learning System. Intravitreal injections [Internet]. San Francisco: American Academy of Ophthalmology, 2008 Nov. [cited 2012 Sep 28]; Available from:

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Milder E, Vander J, Shah C, Garg S. Changes in antibiotic resistance patterns of conjunctival flora due to repeated use of topical antibiotics after intravitreal injections. Ophthalmol [Internet]. 2012 Jul:119(7):1420-4.