Methodology: 2/5          
Usefulness: 2/5 

Shipman S, et al. Ann Emerg Med. 2021 Mar;77(3):338-344. doi: 10.1016/j.annemergmed.2020.08.036. 

Question and Methods: Double blinded RCT comparing tetracaine versus placebo eye drops for 24 hours in the treatment of pain for uncomplicated corneal abrasions.
Findings: Significant 6.1 point reduction in pain score and no increase in complication rate in the tetracaine group compared to placebo.
Limitations: Single-center study with poor 1 week follow-up and not actually powered to establish safety of tetracaine eye drops.

Interpretation: Tetracaine eye drops for 24 hours are effective and may be safe in the reliable patient with uncomplicated corneal abrasion and timely ophthalmology follow-up.

By: Dr. Yang Guo


  • Hans Rosenberg

    Dr. Rosenberg is an emergency physician at the Ottawa Hospital, assistant professor at the University of Ottawa, and Director of the Digital Scholarship and Knowledge Dissemination Program.

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