Contact lens keratitis is an inflammation of the eye cornea caused by improper contact lens hygiene, cleaning, storage and mechanical abrasions that cornea experiences with each blink of an eye. Contact lens keratitis is diagnosed in approximately 60,000 people across the globe every year according to recent medical statistics.
Improper lens selection, rough insertion and removal can all contribute to corneal damage and to bloodshot eyes causes. Contact lens keratitis becomes possible due to the actual nature of contact lens usage that is, in fact, a foreign object that covers an eye partially causing considerable eye dryness and lack of oxygen reaching the surface of the eye.
Surprisingly, one of the best selling ophthalmological contact lens solution by Bausch & Lomb was responsible for an outbreak of contact lens keratitis in 2006 due to a large batch being contaminated with fungi organisms. Multi-purpose contact lens solution that was intended for cleaning, disinfection and storage allowed some types of fungal bacteria to remain intact and thrive to subsequently cause inflammation of the cornea.
Let’s review some practical information that might help you prevent the occurrence of contact lens keratitis. Always wash hands before handling your contact lenses. Take your time to thoroughly clean, disinfect and rinse your contact lenses. Never swim in lakes, ponds or any water bodies while wearing your contact lenses since it may cause a potentially blinding condition called acanthamoeba keratitis by one cell amoebae living in the water.
In order to avoid many types of keratitis including microbial keratitis, make sure you replace your soft contact lenses at least every three months, not wear your contact lenses at night and use a stronger sanitizing solution. Ask your doctor to help you select the right type of contact lenses for your vision needs.
If you have a history of keratitis sicca or dry eyes, make sure you wear contact lenses for dry eyes that are intended to address your eye problem. Sicca syndrome might be exacerbated by the contact lens wear, artificial tear drops and wearing your contact lenses for shorter periods of time might be helpful to control your eye dryness.