Drugs Home > What Is Bromfenac Used For?

A healthcare provider may recommend that you use bromfenac if you have cataract surgery. This drug is applied to the eye and works by blocking certain substances in the body that cause pain and inflammation. This prescription eye drop may sometimes be prescribed for treating pain and swelling caused by other types of eye surgeries; however, these are off-label uses.

An Overview of Uses for Bromfenac

Bromfenac ophthalmic solution (Bromday®, Prolensa™, Xibrom®) is a prescription nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that comes in the form of an eye drop. It is approved to treat inflammation and reduce pain in people who have had cataract surgery.
A cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye, which interferes with normal vision. The lens of the eye is normally clear, but begins to cloud with age. Most cataracts are age-related. However, a cataract can also be caused by other things, such as injury to the eye (see Cataract Types and Cataract Causes for information about factors that can cause or increase the risk for cataracts).
Typically, cataract formation is a slow and painless process. A cataract can develop in one or both eyes, but does not spread from eye to eye. In the beginning, when only a small part of the lens is clouded, vision impairment is generally minimal. However, as the cataract grows, symptoms become more noticeable, and a person's vision typically becomes more clouded and blurred (see Cataract Symptoms to learn more vision changes associated with cataracts).
Surgery is the only truly effective treatment for cataracts. It is generally recommended when cataracts begin to interfere with a person's normal daily activities and quality of life. During cataract surgery, the cloudy lens is removed and replaced with an artificial lens. Cataract surgery is a quite common, safe, and effective procedure. For most people, recovery time is minimal, and vision begins to improve fairly quickly.
(Click Cataract Surgery to learn more, including the possible benefits and complications of cataract surgery.)
Bromfenac is used to help reduce the swelling and pain from cataract surgery. It is normally used starting one day before surgery, and continued for two weeks after surgery. There are several different bromfenac medications available, including:
  • Bromday, a brand-name 0.09% bromfenac solution that is used once a day
  • Prolensa, a lower-strength brand-name version of bromfenac (0.07% solution) that is also used once a day
  • A generic version of Xibrom, a 0.09% bromfenac solution that is used twice a day. Brand-name Xibrom is no longer made.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
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