Glaucoma Drug Might Grow Lashes, Or Turn Your Blue Eyes Brown

Latisse, a new drug that promises longer, fuller lashes, started out as Lumigan, a glaucoma drug. Now’s been approved by the FDA to treat “inadequate” eyelashes, but there are some pretty crazy possible side effects. Like permanent changes to your eye color.

Our sister-publication Consumer Reports Health has this to say about Latisse:

If you go to the Latisse Web site you’ll see an eye as blue as a tropical sea, surrounded by lush, palm-tree-like eyelashes. But that Caribbean-blue iris could change to dark brown in patients using the drug. Some people could see a permanent change in the color of their eyes, with lighter greens and blues turning to darker browns.

And then there’s the possibility of a permanently darkened eyelid. We are concerned that the Latisse trial included too few African-Americans, who may be especially prone to this side effect. And it can cause itchy, red eyes in a significant number of users.

We’re also worried that the people using Latisse for cosmetic reasons could be less likely than users of Lumigan to use the medication as directed. Might some people apply more than necessary in an effort to get even longer eyelashes? If so, it might exacerbate some of the cosmetic side effects that appeared in the drug’s trials.

And then of course, there’s the possibility that using Latisse for cosmetic reasons might mask the symptoms of glaucoma — causing the disease to go undiagnosed.

Drug promises fuller lashes, but at what cost? [CR Health]