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Santen joins forces with ophthalmologists in the fight against antibiotic resistance

Thu 8 October 2020

Santen is delighted to announce the launch of the Re-SOLVE Antibiotic Resistance initiative, which aims to lead the way in the fight against antibiotic resistance in ophthalmology. The initiative will promote and encourage good antibiotic stewardship – a set of actions for the sustainable and effective use of antibiotics – by amplifying the expert voices of physicians, activists and organisations about this global health priority. Antimicrobial resistant infections currently cause 50,000 deaths per year in Europe and the USA, as of 2014.1 Ophthalmologists play a critical role in managing this issue since 97% use antibiotics prophylactically for 4.5 million cataract surgeries that take place every year in EU and member states, as of 2016.2,3

“Antibiotic resistance develops naturally through gene mutations. However, overuse and misuse of antibiotics has accelerated this problem. We can help to manage this issue by selecting a prophylactic therapy following cataract surgery with the minimum duration, that kills the likely known pathogens and provides appropriate prophylactic rather than therapeutic doses,” said Mr Ali Mearza, Ophthalmic Consultants of London & Imperial College NHS Trust, UK.

Join the revolution

If antibiotic stewardship does not improve, antimicrobial resistance could cause 10 million deaths by 2050.1 The issue is growing due to the overuse and misuse of antibiotics, which is further exacerbated by exposure to long courses of treatment.4 

By raising awareness of the important role of ophthalmologists in mitigating this global health issue, Santen hopes to empower them to actively take steps to ensure the sustainable use of antibiotics by: 

  1. Limiting antibiotic exposure by prescribing the shortest duration of therapy5
  2. Covering the most likely known pathogens with empiric treatment6
  3. Efficiently and rapidly eliminating the pathogen to reduce the risk of resistance developing, i.e. high microbial eradication6  

“It’s no secret that increased exposure to antibiotics is contributing to increasing resistance of infectious pathogens,” said Luis Iglesias, President and Head of Santen EMEA. “As a trusted specialist, Santen is committed to collaborating with the healthcare community to enact positive change in the fight against antibiotic resistance.”


  1. Review on antimicrobial resistance. Antimicrobial resistance: Tackling a crisis for the health and wealth of nations (2014). Available here: Last accessed October 2020 
  2. Eurostat. Cataract surgery: how countries compare. Available here: Last accessed October 2020
  3. Haripriya A. er al. Indian J Ophthalmol 2017; 65 (12): 1390-95
  4. World Health Organisation (WHO) 2015. Worldwide country situation analysis: Response to antimicrobial resistance. Available from:;jsessionid=C58A77657952C274ADAEFA4D71D37C5D?sequence=1 Last accessed October 2020
  5. Wilson HL. Aust Prescr 2019; 42(1): 5-9
  6. American Academy of Ophthalmology. Focal points. Antibiotic use in corneal and external eye infections (2011). Available here: Last accessed October 2020

Document number: NP-No product-EMEA-0065  
Date of preparation: October 2020