Rapitil Eye Drops

Rapitil Eye Drops offer effective relief from red, itchy, watery eyes caused by allergies such as hay fever

Rapitil eye drops are a prescription-only medicine used to treat eye allergies that occur as a result of hay fever and allergic reactions to animal hair or dust mites.

Our prices

Strength Quantity Price Stock
2%1 x 5ml bottle£4.95Out of Stock
2%2 x 5ml bottles£15.75Out of Stock
2%3 x 5ml bottles£21.45Out of Stock
Prices exclude a prescription fee. This treatment requires a quick online consultation,
which a doctor will review to determine if a prescription is appropriate.

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Virginia Chachati

Reviewed by Virginia Chachati MPharm
(2013, University College London)
GPhC Registration number: 2087654

Information last reviewed 28/02/21


What are Rapitil Eye Drops?

Rapitil eye drops are a prescription-only medicine. They help treat the symptoms of eye allergies. These include itchy and watery eyes. Eye irritation, from hay fever or allergic reactions to animal hair and dust mites, can be prevented while using Rapitil eye drops.

How does Rapitil work?

Rapitil eye drops contain nedocromil sodium, a type of medicine known as a mast cell stabiliser. Mast cells are a natural part of your immune system which are sensitive to allergens such as pollen or dust mites. These allergens trigger the release of histamine from mast cells, resulting in symptoms such as a runny nose, itchy eyes and sneezing. Nedocromil sodium can help stabilise mast cells, preventing the release of histamine. Rapitil eye drops are applied directly to your eyes. They act locally to prevent your eyes becoming red, itchy and watery.

How long do Rapitil eye drops take to work?

Rapitil eye drops work best if you begin using it a few days before you are exposed to allergens. For example, start using Rapitil in advance of high pollen season to prevent symptoms of hay fever. You should use Rapitil as prescribed by your doctor. This is typically twice a day, in the morning and evening, for up to 12 weeks to keep symptoms at bay. Do not wear soft contact lenses while using Rapitil eye drops. You can wear hard or gas-permeable contact lenses, but you must remove them before applying Rapitil eye drops, and wait for 10 minutes before putting them back in.


How to use Rapitil eye drops?

Always use Rapitil eye drops as instructed by a doctor or pharmacist. Wash your hands with soap and water before applying Rapitil eye drops. You should remove hard or gas-permeable contact lenses before applying Rapitil eye drops. You should not use Rapitil eye drops with soft contact lenses. Tilt your head back, gently open your lower eyelid and squeeze the bottle to allow one drop into your lower eyelid. Take special care to avoid touching your eye with the tip of the Rapitil eye drops bottle. Blink to spread the eye drop over the eye. Repeat this process for your other eye and then place the cap back onto the bottle. If you wear hard or gas-permeable contact lenses, you should wait 10 minutes after applying Rapitil eye drops to put your contact lenses back on.

Rapitil eye drops dosage

For treating allergies such as hay fever, the recommended dose of Rapitil eye drops is one drop in each eye, twice a day, for no longer than 12 weeks. This can be increased to four times a day if necessary.

Side Effects

Rapitil side effects

Rapitil eye drops can cause side effects in some people. If you experience itching, redness or swelling, stop using Rapitil eye drops and contact a doctor immediately. Around 1 in 10 people may experience the following:

  • Stinging, burning, or blurry vision. This should only occur for a short period of time after applying the eye drops and should quickly wear off.
  • Change in the way things taste
  • Mild eye irritation

If symptoms persist, speak to a doctor or pharmacist for advice on alternative treatments.


Do not use Rapitil eye drops if you are allergic to nedocromil sodium or any of the inactive ingredients. You should not use Rapitil eye drops if you wear soft contact lenses. Speak to a doctor before using Rapitil eye drops if you are pregnant, planning a baby or breastfeeding.

Drug interactions

There are no known medicine interactions with Rapitil eye drops. Speak to a doctor or pharmacist if you intend to use other eye drops or medicines whilst using Rapitil eye drops.

Can I use Rapitil with other eye drops?

Check with your doctor or pharmacist before using Rapitil eye drops and other eye drops at the same time. If you are using different types of eye drops, you should leave a gap of at least 5 minutes between administering each type.

Will Rapitil affect my vision?

When you apply Rapitil eye drops, you may notice your vision is blurred temporarily. But Rapitil eye drops should not affect your vision in the long-term. If you wear soft contact lenses you should not use Rapitil eye drops because it contains a preservative that can damage your contact lenses.

Can I drive whilst using Rapitil?

Rapitil eye drops can cause blurred vision after you apply them to your eyes. If you experience this, do not drive until your vision has cleared. This normally takes a few minutes.

Treatment Options

Alternatives to Rapitil eye drops

There are alternatives to Rapitil eye drops which can treat hay fever and eye allergies. Unlike Rapitil eye drops, which contains a mast cell stabiliser, Optilast eye drops contain an antihistamine and effectively relieve the symptoms of hay fever as they occur. For relieving inflammation and irritation of the nasal passage, nasal sprays such as Rhinolast, Beconase, Avamys and Dymista are available. For treating general symptoms of hay fever, antihistamine tablets such as Loratadine, Cetirizine, Telfast and Fexofenadine can be purchased from Dr Felix and taken as prescribed.

Optilast vs Rapitil eye drops

An alternative to Rapitil eye drops is Optilast eye drops. Rapitil eye drops work by stabilising mast cells and preventing an allergic reaction. Optilast eye drops contain an antihistamine that works fast to treat and provide immediate relief of symptoms as they occur.

Tips to avoid hay fever

There are some measures you can take to prevent and ease the symptoms of hay fever. If you plan to be outdoors when the pollen count is high, try wearing wrap-around sunglasses to prevent eye irritation from pollen. Put petroleum jelly (such as Vaseline) on the inside of your nostrils to trap pollen and prevent it from irritating your nose. Avoid walking on freshly cut grass. When indoors, try to keep the windows of your house shut and do not keep fresh flowers in the house. Avoid drying your clothes outside, as they can catch pollen which you then bring inside.

Can I use Rapitil with other hay fever treatments?

Rapitil eye drops can be used with other hay fever treatments. Oral antihistamines such as Loratadine, Cetirizine, Telfast and Fexofenadine can be taken once a day to treat symptoms of hay fever. In addition, antihistamine nasal sprays such as Rhinolast, Beconase, Avamys and Dymista can also be used to relieve nasal swelling, itching, sneezing and congestion.


Can I use Rapitil eye drops for other allergies?

Rapitil eye drops can be used for other allergies that cause eye irritation. It is also prescribed to treat a severe allergic reaction called vernal keratoconjunctivitis (VKC).


Active ingredients

The active ingredient in Rapitil eye drops is nedocromil sodium.

Inactive ingredients

The inactive ingredients of Rapitil eye drops are disodium edetate, benzalkonium chloride, sodium chloride and purified water.

Which ingredients can cause an allergic reaction?


Rapitil eye drops are deemed safe to use in people and do not have many side effects. You should stop using Rapitil if you notice these symptoms: The itching, redness or swelling gets worse. You may be allergic to these drops. You should seek medical attention from a doctor as soon as possible. 

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