Reusable Contact Lenses Can Cause A Rare Eye Infection, Study Shows

A new study has found that using reusable contact lenses could lead to a rare eye infection that results in vision loss. 

Reusable contact lenses could leave you blind 

A study published in the Opthalmology revealed that individuals that wear reusable lenses are four times most likely to get a corneal infection that could lead to blindness compared to those using disposables. In addition, according to researchers, acanthamoeba keratitis risk increases if one ears multi-use lenses overnight or when taking a shower. 

There is an increase in cases of acanthamoeba keratitis across the United Kingdom and Europe. Despite this being a rare disease, it is prevented table, and it needs public health response, according to Professor John Dart. 

Dart explains that lenses are usually safe even though a small risk is involved. However, he explained that it is crucial for people to understand ways of reducing the chances of developing keratitis. Currently, there are more than  300 million individuals globally that wear contact lenses.

Acanthamoeba Keratitis is caused by acanthamoeba and can lead to blindness. Symptoms vary from person to person and could last for weeks. They include eye redness, pain, sensitivity to light, blurred vision, excessive tearing and sensation in the eye. 

The cyst is resilient. Therefore treating the condition can be challenging. The current course of treatment typically includes a conventional cationic antiseptic like chlorhexidine or polyhexamethylene biguanide or with or without a diamidine such as hexamidine or propamidine. Be aware that a physician should establish the dosage of these medications.

Research in reusable contact lenses 

A study of 200 patients in the Moorfields Eye Hospital in London found that those who wear reusable soft contact lenses were 3.8 times more likely to have the condition than those who use disposable contact lenses. Of the total participants, 83 had corneal infections compared to 122 individuals who visited clinics for various reasons. 

 According to research, changing daily disposable lenses could stop 30–62% of acanthamoeba keratitis infections in the UK. However, in people in the northern hemisphere with healthy eyes, contact lens usage is the main contributor to corneal infection.

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