Visine, Vispring
Markets Eye drops

Visine /ˌvˈzn/ is a brand of eye drops produced by Johnson & Johnson. Johnson & Johnson acquired Visine, along with Pfizer's entire consumer healthcare portfolio, in December 2006. In some countries it is called Vispring.

Visine Original

The active ingredients in the original Visine formulation are potassium chloride and tetrahydrozoline hydrochloride which is a vasoconstrictor, and therefore constricts the eye's superficial blood vessels.


Visine is administered topically with 1 to 2 drops applied to the affected eye(s) up to 4 times daily .

Adverse effects

Side effects

A common urban legend is that a few drops of Visine in an unsuspecting victim's drink will cause a harmless bout of diarrhea. This will not produce diarrhea, but oral administration of Visine can induce dangerous side effects related to Visine's ingredient tetrahydrozoline hydrochloride such as:

Anyone ingesting Visine should get medical attention or contact a poison control center immediately.[2]


Visine is formulated in several varieties:

VISINE A.C. - Astringent/Redness Reliever Eye Drops (Tetrahydrozoline HCl 0.05%, Zinc sulfate 0.25%)

VISINE FOR CONTACTS - For Silicone Hydrogel and Hydrophilic lenses

VISINE L.R. (Oxymetazoline HCI 0.025%)

VISINE TEARS (Glycerin 0.2%, Hypromellose 0.2%, Polyethylene glycol 400 1% - Used AS NEEDED)

VISINE-A (Formerly OCUHIST) (Naphazoline hydrochloride 0.025%, Pheniramine maleate 0.3%)

VISINE MAXIMUM (Glycerin 0.2%, Hypromellose 0.36%, Polyethylene glycol 400 1.0%, Tetrahydrozoline HCI 0.05%)

VISINE TOTALITY (Glycerin 0.2%, Hypromellose 0.36%, Polyethylene glycol 400 1.0%, Tetrahydrozoline HCI 0.05%, Zinc sulfate 0.25%)

The effect of Visine causing upset stomach when being ingested is depicted in the movie Wedding Crashers where John Beckwith portrayed by Owen Wilson poisons Sack's (Bradley Cooper) drink causing him to vomit all night. John Beckwith also uses the Visine several times over the course of the film to fake crying. This movie has gained notoriety for encouraging the deadly prank of putting Visine eyedrops in drinking water bottles, threatening severe or fatal injury to drinkers.[3]

The urban myth about Visine is also perpetuated in the movie version of I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell (film). In the movie, the main character Tucker Max played by Matt Czuchry is making fun of two women at the bar, one of them squirts Visine into his beer bottle. This leads to Tucker and an allegedly married woman he leaves the bar with to both have explosive diarrhea.


  1. Skilling Jr, FC; Weaver, TA; Kato, KP; Ford, JG; Dussia, EM (2005). "Effects of two eye drop products on computer users with subjective ocular discomfort". Optometry (St. Louis, Mo.). 76 (1): 47–54. doi:10.1016/s1529-1839(05)70254-2. PMID 15682562.
  2. "Visine Original". Johnson & Johnson Healthcare Products Division of McNeil. If swallowed, get medical help or contact a Poison Control Center right away. under Warnings
  3. "Student jailed for 90 days for putting eyedrops into her room-mate's water after seeing stunt on Wedding Crashers". Daily Mail. London. 2011-09-19.
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