our mission is to protect and promote eye health
we are passionate about preservative-free
We want a world with better outcomes. Our strategy is based on expertise. Théa was among the first to introduce preservative-free eye drops, responding to well-known issues caused by preservative ingredients often found in ophthalmology products. A solution was needed for the issues caused by preservative ingredients such as benzalkonium chloride (BAK), the most used preservative. While we take action against preservatives often found in ophthalmology products, we also assess needs across the industry and leverage our expertise to develop high-quality solutions for diagnosis, surgery and therapeutics.
A smaller focus can make a huge impact. With fewer formulations and drug products, our concentrated core solutions can maximize effectiveness and support our mission to meet the complete needs of all eye care professionals.
the history of preservative-free eye care
Théa pioneered preservative-free eye care products and remains the world leader. The use of preservatives in ophthalmic products began in the 1950s to prevent microbial and viral contamination. But decades later, numerous publications began to report on the detrimental effects of preservatives on the cornea, the conjunctiva, and the tear film that causes irritation, inflammation and dry eye.
Focusing on innovating convenient delivery systems that patients could use in their daily routine, Théa invented the first multi-dose bottle capable of dispensing preservative-free eye drops, the ABAK
Today, ophthalmology has entered the preservative-free era, enhancing patients’ vision with a complete suite of effective and safe eye care treatments.
the history of preservative-free eye care
What is a preservative?
There are various types of preservatives, which differ based on their physio- chemical properties, microbial spectrum of activity, toxicity and potency on the ocular surface.
They include organomercury derivatives, amidines, alcohols, parabens, oxychloride complexes and quaternary ammonium compound. BAK (benzalkonium chloride) is the most widely used preservative in ophthalmology.
detrimental effects of preservatives
The prolonged use of eye drops containing one or more preservatives leads to negative effects on the tear film, in the superficial structures (conjunctiva, cornea) and in the deeper parts of the eye (lens, trabecular meshwork).
The mildest ocular symptoms are discomfort or irritation with a feeling of dry eye. More severe secondary effects are seen with various levels of inflammation that may lead to the development of fibrosis in the eye. Fibrosis may increase the risk of failure in glaucoma surgery. The severity of secondary effects depends on the duration of treatment, the dosage, and the type and concentration of the preservatives used in the eye drops.
The best way to limit these complications is to either reduce the dosage frequency of eye drops that contain preservatives or to use preservative- free eye drops.
Preservative-free eye treatment is a proven solution that makes a positive impact on patient outcomes and improves symptoms of eye disease.
A study showed patients who switched to BAK-free preparations reported a significant decrease in the use of lubricants (P<0.001).
In another study, corneal signs were significantly more frequent in the preservative group (P<0.0001) than in the preservative-free group. These signs include pain or discomfort during instillation (48 vs 19%), foreign body sensation (42 vs 15%), stinging or burning (48 vs 20%) and dry eye sensation (35 vs 16%).
Preservative-free at work
3: moderate-to-severe conjunctival hyperemia was seen in 56.8% of patients at Day 0, but this figure decreased to:
AT DAY 15
AT DAY 45
AT DAY 90
Overall tolerability also improved from the change of therapy from Day 1 to Day 90.*
*0-10 scale indicated improvement with change of therapy (mean score: 5.3 [standard deviation = 2.2] at Day 0 versus 1.9 [standard deviation = 1.7] at Day 90; P < 0.0001).
IN A 2010 STUDY OF PRESERVATIVE-FREE TOLERABILITY THAT LASTED 12 WEEKS, 158 PATIENTS HAD DECREASES IN
BY CHOOSING PRESERVATIVE-FREE EYE CARE SOLUTIONS, WE CAN CONTINUE TO REDUCE OCULAR DAMAGE AND IMPROVE OUTCOMES WORLDWIDE.
>1. Goldberg I, Graham SL, Crowston JG, d’Mellow G; Australian and New Zealand Glaucoma Interest Group. Clinical audit examining the impact of benzalkonium chloride-free anti-glaucoma medications on patients with symptoms of ocular surface disease. Clin Experiment Ophthalmol. 2015;43(3):214-220. 2. Jaenen N, Baudouin C, Pouliquen P, et al. Ocular symptoms and signs with preserved and preservative-free glaucoma medications. Eur J Ophthalmol. 2007;17(3):341-349. 3. Misiuk-Hojlo M, et al. The RELIEF study: tolerability and efficacy of preservative-free latanoprost in the treatment of glaucoma or ocular hypertension. Eur J Ophthalmol. 2019;29(2):210-215. 4. Uusitalo H, Chen E, Pfeiffer N, et al. Switching from a preserved to a preservative-free prostaglandin preparation in topical glaucoma medication. Acta Ophthalmol. 2010;88(3):329-336.