Alcon launches OTC Pataday allergy eye drops

David Salazar
Managing Editor

Alcon’s Pataday is making the switch. Two versions of the formerly prescription-only product now are available over-the-counter following Food and Drug Administration approval for OTC sale. 

“At Alcon, we are focused on delivering new eye care products and solutions that meet the needs of patients and consumers, including those who suffer from allergies,” said Sergio Duplan, Alcon North America region president. “We are proud to launch prescription-strength Pataday as a convenient, more easily accessible, over-the-counter option to relieve the itchy eyes that almost 1-in-5 Americans experience due to ocular allergies.”

Pataday Once Daily Relief and Pataday Twice Daily Relief contain the top doctor-prescribed eye allergy itch relief ingredient. Both products are meant to provide long-lasting relief for itchy eyes within minutes. 

“While eye allergies impact millions of Americans, only a small percentage of those use over-the-counter allergy eye drops likely due to a lack of awareness of effective options that treat the problem at the source,” said Michael Cooper, a doctor of optometry with Solinsky Eye Care in Hartford, CT. “For years, olopatadine has been my ‘go-to’ eye drop for patients struggling with itchy allergy eyes and I’m thrilled they will now be able to get the same relief over the counter whenever they need it. My hope is that more allergy sufferers will discover the benefits of Pataday and add it to their medicine cabinet this spring allergy season and beyond.”

The company said it expects the Pataday offerings to be available at retail on March 2 ahead of allergy season. 

The approval of Alcon's Rx-to-OTC switch isn't the only one recently handed down by the FDA this week. GSK Consumer Healthcare also received approval for its Voltaren Arthritis Relief. 

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