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Man Loses an Eye in Cautionary Tale for Patients with Contact Lenses

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Do your instructions for proper lens care really sink in?

You educate your patients time and again on proper contact lens care and hygiene. But does it really sink in? If not, here’s a story that just might get their attention.

Andrew Carthew of Cornwall, England, woke up one day with a weeping eye, and over the course of a few weeks the problem progressed to severe pain, Metro reports.

Several weeks later, doctors had to remove the eye. At first, doctors thought he had a typical eye infection. But it soon became clear that wasn’t the case.

“There was about six to eight weeks where all I did was lay in a darkened room with sunglasses on,” he said, according to Metro, “and the only time I ever went out was to go to hospital.”

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In fact, he had a severe case of acanthamoeba keratitis.

The risk for the condition is generally thought to arise from contact wearers washing their lenses in tap water, or from bathing or swimming while wearing their lenses. But those factors didn’t apply to Carthew, 59.

Instead, he said: “I must have had a contaminated finger and rubbed my eye or put them in with a contaminated finger and the bacteria harboured in this case.”

Carthew said he’s sometimes been depressed about losing his eye, but he’s thankful he didn’t die from the infection. He hopes others can learn from his rare ordeal and be extra-cautious about contact lens hygiene.

Read more at Metro

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