Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Poor contact lens care is the cause of fungal keratitis

In April, ReNu a popular contact lens cleanser made by Baush & Lomb was recalled worldwide because it was linked to a rare fungal infection of the eye known as fungal keratitis. A study conducted in Singapore finds that 66 contact lens wearers had the fungal infection between March 2005 through May 2006 and poor lens care may be the reason for the infections. From Forbes:
Using this data, the researchers estimated the annual incidence of Fusarium keratitis in Singapore rose to 2.35 cases for every 10,000 contact lens wearers.

Among the patients, 98.5 percent wore soft, disposable contact lenses, and close to 94 percent said they used ReNu brand cleaning solution. This included 42 patients (63.6 percent) who used ReNu with MoistureLoc. Six patients said they used another Bausch & Lomb brand, Renu MultiPlus, while 11 said they used some type of (unspecified) ReNu multipurpose cleaning solution.

Forty-four of the Singapore patients suffered sight-threatening lesions severe enough for them to be hospitalized for an average of 6.5 days. In addition, five patients had to undergo corneal transplantation...

"This may occur under conditions, for example, where the solution is allowed to evaporate, the solution is not regularly replaced in the lens case, or when the case is not cleaned properly. This may lead to the contact lens becoming contaminated with Fusarium and could create an environment for potential infection," Panzarella said .

Bausch & Lomb spokeswoman Meg Graham told HealthDay that no other reasons for the outbreaks have been found.

The Singapore team agreed that poor contact lens care may have played a role in the infections.
Previously: Beware of Bausch & Lomb ReNu

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