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Generic Name: Ketotifen
Product Name: Zaditen


Zaditen eye drops are used to relieve the symptoms of allergic conjunctivitis, such as itching eyes. They are suitable for use by adults and children over three years of age, for short term or seasonal use.


Ketotifen, the active ingredient in Zaditen, reduces inflammation and stabilises the mast cells of the eye. Mast cells are granule-containing cells found in many human organs. They play a role in preventing allergies by releasing anti-allergenic agents, including heparin, serotonin and histamine.

Dose advice

Dose information

Zaditen eye drops should be applied twice a day. At each application, one drop of Zaditen should be applied to the conjunctival sac (the space between the eyelid and eyeball that fills with tears). If you have questions about the correct use of Zaditen, speak to your doctor or pharmacist.


Zaditen should not be used by patients who are hypersensitive to Zaditen or any of the other ingredients in the medication. The eye drops should not be applied to the eyes of children who are younger than three years.


Zaditen should not be applied while contact lenses are being used. Contact lens users should remove their lenses before applying the eye drops. The lenses should not be replaced for at least 15 minutes after Zaditen has been applied.

Studies show that higher doses of ketotifen impairs the fertility of male rats. However, there are no studies examining whether or not low doses of ketotifen (similar to the dose achieved by using the eye drops twice a day) affect the fertility of human males.

Use in pregnancy

Zaditen is a Pregnancy Category B1 medication. There is currently not enough scientific evidence to demonstrate whether or not it is safe to use Zaditen during pregnancy. Pregnant women should be cautious and consult a doctor or pharmacist before using Zaditen.

Use during breastfeeding

There is currently not enough scientific evidence to show whether or not it is safe to use Zaditen while breastfeeding. Breastfeeding women should be cautious and consult a doctor or pharmacist before using Zaditen.


Zaditen is classified as Schedule 2.1,2

Common side effects

Zaditen, like all medications, causes side effects in some of the people who use it. However, the majority of users do not experience any side effects.

The side effects of Zaditen are typically minor and temporary conditions. A pharmacist or doctor will take into account the likelihood of side effects occurring when they make a recommendation about whether or not a person should use Zaditen.

When Zaditen is taken at the correct dose, the side effects of Zaditen that occur commonly (in 1–10% of individuals who use the medication) are:

Uncommon side effects

When Zaditen is taken at the correct dose, there are also some uncommon side effects (occurring in 0.1–1% of individuals who use the medication). These are:

  • Allergic reaction;
  • Headache;
  • Sleepiness;
  • Blurred vision after application;
  • Dry eyes;
  • Eyelid disorder;
  • Conjunctivitis;
  • Eye pain;
  • Photophobia (sensitivity to light);
  • Conjunctival haemorrhage (bleeding in the conjunctival section of the eye).

If you experience any of the listed side effects, or any other symptoms which appear abnormal or unusual, please tell your doctor.


  1. Product Information: Zaditen. North Ryde, NSW: Novartis Pharmaceuticals Australia Pty Ltd; 27 January 2009.
  2. Zaditen [online]. St Leonards, NSW: MIMS Online; 17 April 2007 [cited 1 July 2009]. Available from: URL link

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For further information talk to your doctor.

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Posted On: 10 December, 2007
Modified On: 13 October, 2010
Reviewed On: 7 July, 2009

Created by: myVMC