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Prescription Prescription Required FormationFormulation: Eye Drops


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Prescription Prescription Required FormationFormulation: Eye Drops


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Optivar is a medication used to treat itching eyes caused by allergies, also known as allergic conjunctivitis. It contains the active ingredient azelastine, which is an antihistamine. Azelastine works by preventing the release of histamines, which are chemicals that are released by the body in response to an allergen and cause allergy symptoms such as itching, redness, and watering of the eyes.

Uses and Dosage

To use Optivar drops, follow the instructions provided by your doctor or pharmacist. Typically, the recommended dose is one drop instilled in the affected eye(s) twice a day. Here are the general steps for using Optivar drops:

  1. Wash your hands with soap and water and dry them with a clean towel.
  2. Remove the cap from the Optivar bottle and hold the bottle upside down between your thumb and fingers.
  3. Tilt your head back slightly and pull down your lower eyelid with your index finger to create a pouch.
  4. Place the tip of the bottle close to your eye and gently squeeze the bottle to release one drop into the pouch.
  5. Release the lower eyelid and close your eye for a few seconds.
  6. Repeat steps 3 to 5 for the other eye if prescribed.

After using Optivar drops, put the cap back on the bottle and store it at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Do not allow the tip of the bottle to touch your eye or any other surface. If you wear contact lenses, remove them before using Optivar and wait at least 15 minutes before reinserting them.

Side Effects

Common Side Effects of Optivar (Azelastine):

  • Bitter taste in your mouth
  • Blurred vision (temporary)
  • Headache
  • Mild headaches
  • Temporary eye burning or stinging

Serious Side Effects of Optivar (Azelastine):

  • Chills
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Eye pain
  • Fever
  • Flu symptoms
  • Hives
  • Severe burning, stinging, itching, or eye redness after using this medication
  • Sore throat
  • Swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat

Form and Strength

Optivar (Azelastine) is available in the following forms and strength:

Optivar: Eye Drops

  • 0.05%

Azelastine: Eye Drops

  • 0.05%


  • Optivar may cause blurred vision, so do not drive or operate heavy machinery until you know how it affects you.
  • Do not use Optivar if you are allergic to azelastine or any other ingredients in the medication.
  • Optivar should only be used as directed by your doctor, and no longer or more frequently than prescribed.
  • If you experience any side effects, such as eye pain or changes in vision, stop using Optivar and contact your doctor right away.
  • Inform your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding before using Optivar.
  • Optivar may interact with certain medications, such as sedatives and tranquilizers, so it is important to inform your doctor of all medications you are taking.
  • If you wear contact lenses, you should remove them before using Optivar and wait at least 15 minutes before reinserting them.
  • Optivar may cause drowsiness, avoid alcohol and other medications that may cause drowsiness while taking this medication.
  • Optivar should not be used in children under the age of three years without first consulting a doctor.
  • Optivar has not been studied in pregnant or breastfeeding women, so it is not known if it is safe to use during pregnancy or while breastfeeding.
  • If you experience an allergic reaction, such as swelling of the face, lips or tongue, difficulty breathing, or hives, stop using Optivar and seek medical attention immediately.
  • Optivar may cause a bitter taste in the mouth or burning or stinging of the eyes. If these side effects worsen or persist, contact your doctor.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How long do I use azelastine?

Use azelastine twice a day if you have allergy-related eye itching. Use Azelastine for up to 8 weeks. Long-term use of Optivar is not usually a problem.

Can I use Optivar during pregnancy or breastfeeding?

It is not known whether Optivar can harm an unborn baby or pass into breast milk, so consult your doctor before using it during pregnancy or while breastfeeding.

Can I use Optivar with other allergy medications?

Do not use Optivar with other antihistamine medications, but you should consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication regimen.


Additional information

Generic name:



Eye Drops



Quantities Available:

6ml, 8mL, 16mL, 18ml


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Online Pharmacies Canada has provided information from third parties intended to increase awareness and does not contain all the information about Optivar (Azelastine). Talk to your doctor or other qualified medical practitioners for medical attention or advice, or if you have any concerns about Optivar (Azelastine).