NEOMYCIN; POLYMYXIN B; HYDROCORTISONE (nee oh MYE sin; pol i MIX in B; hye droe KOR ti sone) treats ear infections caused by bacteria. It works by killing or preventing the growth of bacteria. It also decreases inflammation, which can reduce pain. It is a combination of two antibiotics and a topical steroid. It will not treat infections caused by viruses.
What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
Chronic ear infections or fluid in the ear
Perforated ear drum
An unusual or allergic reaction to neomycin, polymyxin B, hydrocortisone, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medication?
This medication is only for use in the ears. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Wash hands before and after use. Gently warm the bottle by holding it in the hand for 1 to 2 minutes. Lie down on your side with the infected ear facing upward. Try not to touch the tip of the dropper to your ear, fingertips, or other surface. Instill the correct number of drops into the ear canal. Stay in this position for 5 minutes to help the drops soak into the ear. Repeat the steps for the other ear if both ears are infected. Do not use your medication more often than directed. Finish the full course of medication prescribed by your care team even if you think your condition is better.
Talk to your care team about the use of this medication in children. While it may be prescribed for selected conditions, precautions do apply.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, use only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
What may interact with this medication?
Interactions are not expected. Do not use other ear products without talking to your care team.
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?
Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:
Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
New or worsening ear pain, redness, irritation, or discharge
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):
Itching or pain in the ear after use
What should I watch for while using this medication?
Visit your care team for regular checks on your progress. Tell your care team if your symptoms do not start to get better or if they get worse. Do not use longer than 10 days unless instructed by your care team.
If rash or allergic reaction occurs, stop the product immediately and contact your care team.
It is important that you keep the infected ear(s) clean and dry. When bathing, try not to get the infected ear(s) wet. Do not go swimming unless your care team has told you otherwise.
To prevent the spread of infection, do not share ear products, towels, and washcloths.
Where should I keep my medication?
Keep out of the reach of children and pets.
Store between 15 and 25 degrees C (59 and 77 degrees F). Do not freeze. Get rid of any unused medication after the expiration date.
To get rid of medications that are no longer needed or have expired:
Take the medication to a medication take-back program. Check with your pharmacy or law enforcement to find a location.
If you cannot return the medication, check the label or package insert to see if the medication should be thrown out in the garbage or flushed down the toilet. If you are not sure, ask your care team. If it is safe to put it in the trash, empty the medication out of the container. Mix the medication with cat litter, dirt, coffee grounds, or other unwanted substance. Seal the mixture in a bag or container. Put it in the trash.
K Health articles are all written and reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, or PharmDs and are for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute and should not be relied on for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment.
This information is educational only and should not be construed as specific instructions for individual patients nor as a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Talk to your health care provider or pharmacist about the information and instructions. K Health assumes no liability for any use or reliance on this information.