It would help if you thought twice about swimming or showering with your contact lenses.
A 41-year-old woman in England almost lost her vision in one eye from an infection she got after swimming and showering whereas carrying contact lenses. Her case is described in a short report published within the New England Journal of Medicine.
Many contact lens wearers are oblivious of the chance of this infection, called Acanthamoeba keratitis. Indeed, it is exceedingly uncommon. In the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates there are one to two cases per million contact lens wearers.
The eye infection is attributable to a microscopic, free-residing amoeba known as Acanthamoeba that is generally present in water and soil. Any water exposure, wearing comfortable contacts, places a person at risk.
Acanthamoeba keratitis happens when the amoeba makes its means onto a person’s cornea. The infection can result in permanent visible impairment or blindness.
The woman described in the case had been experiencing recurrent pain, blurry vision, and sensitivity to gentle for two months before she sought medical care, according to the report.
To diagnose the infection, doctors take a culture of a corneal scraping. Then, they affirm the prognosis by placing a dye within the affected eye — if the amoeba is current, the infection will turn from a hazy brown to a bright fluorescent green.
Register stated that due to the amoeba’s aggressive nature, it is extra prudent for doctors to deal with the infection immediately if there’s a suspicion that a microbe could be the reason for a patient’s eye signs.