A new model for evaluating ocular decongestant activity in animals has been described. The method is based on preselection of test subjects using a simple minimally variable grading system for conjunctival and episcleral vessels and a novel statistical method of quantifying decongestant activity. Naphazoline hydrochloride was used as the test drug and a saline solution vehicle was used as the negative control. The model was sensitive to concentrations of naphazoline hydrochloride between 0.001 and 0.1% and a linear concentration dependent response was obtained. As evaluated in this system, naphazoline hydrochloride was an effective decongestant (vasoconstrictor) with a duration of activity of several hours at concentrations of 0.01% or greater. Although this method was developed for use in animals, adaptation of this procedure to human testing should meet with minimal difficulties.

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