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How do chloramphenicol eye drops and ointment work?

  These medicines both contain the active ingredient chloramphenicol, which is a type of medicine called an antibiotic. Antibiotics are used to treat infections caused by bacteria.

  Chloramphenicol is a broad-spectrum antibiotic, which means it is effective against infections caused by a wide variety of bacteria.

  Chloramphenicol works by preventing bacteria from producing proteins that are essential to them. Without these proteins the bacteria cannot grow, replicate and increase in numbers. Chloramphenicol controls the numbers of bacteria causing the infection, and the remaining bacteria die or are killed by the body's immune system. This clears up the infection.

  Putting the medicine into the eye allows it to act directly on the bacteria causing the infection.