b. Positioning. Proper positioning of the patient prior to giving eye treatments
is important to ensure that the head is under control and the eye is properly opened.
(1) When the patient is seated in a chair, the care giver may stand behind
the patient to give support to the head.
A patient lying in bed has sufficient support from the bed.
(3) To prevent injury when instilling drops or ointments, brace the hand
holding the medication on the patient's forehead. This prevents your hand from
shaking, and allows your hand to move with the patient.
(4) To prevent the spread of infection when irrigating the eye, tilt the
patient's head toward the affected side so that the solution will flow from the inner
canthus to the outer canthus. Do not allow the solution to flow across the nose into the
unaffected eye. Do not touch the eye with the irrigating equipment.
1-13. INSTILLING EYE DROPS OR OINTMENTS
a. Review the patient's clinical record to verify the order.
b. Wash your hands and assemble the necessary equipment.
Normal saline solution.
Two by two inch gauze squares.
c. Approach and identify the patient.
d. Explain the procedure and the purpose of the medication to the patient.
e. Provide for privacy, if appropriate.
f. If the patient is wearing an eye dressing, remove it by gently pulling down and
away from the forehead. Discard the dressing and wash your hands.
g. Remove any accumulation of discharge by cleansing around the eye. Use
the procedure outlined in paragraph 1-12a.
(1) If secretions are crusted, apply a moistened gauze square over the
closed eye and leave in place for several minutes.