Visine is a brand of over-the-counter eye drops. The original formula contained the drug tetrahydrozoline, a stimulant that makes the blood vessels on the surface of the conjunctiva constrict and shrink. This makes the eyes look whiter and thus it “gets the red out.”  This effect is short-lived and many people have a rebound effect where the eye turns redder after the drug wears off. Overall, Visine doesn’t fix anything and may not be healthy as it decreases blood supply to the irritated tissues. Johnson & Johnson has expanded the Visine brand name to include an entire line of rewetting and allergy drops, so read the label to see what you’re actually buying.

Dr. Timothy Root is a practicing ophthalmologist and cataract surgeon in Daytona Beach, Florida. His books, video lectures, and training resources can be found at:


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