Can I Get an Infection From Unclean Contacts?

Although millions of individuals use contact lenses safely everyday, they are not without certain risks, particularly that of an eye infection. The most common cause of eye infections, from contact lenses, is keratitis. Also known as cornea inflammation, Keratitis occurs when the clear tissue on the front of your eye becomes swollen, and can happen if you leave your contact lenses in for an extended period of time. There are other ways that you can contract keratisis, such as dry eyes and injury, but they are broad and can range from herpes, fungus and bacteria, and sometimes unknown factors.

Fungal Keratisis Causes

That being said, the most common form of keratisis is fungal, and is caused by the fungi known as Fusaria. Fusaria are common fungi that can be found in the soil, in water or on the cellulose layer of plants, and is particularly found in warmer climates. Fusaria can develop on contact lenses if they are exposed to excessive moisture or plant residue, whether you are wearing them or not. It can also transfer from your contact lenses into your cornea, if there is an existing superficial injury, such as a cut or scratch.

Fungal Keratisis Symptoms

While fungal kertasis is a serious condition, there are several tell-tale signs that you may have this condition. Symptoms can range from sudden pain in the eye, to excessive tearing or any discharge from your eyes. If you think you have experienced any symptoms of fungal keratisis from your contact lenses, such as eye redness, reduced vision or excessive light sensitivity, you should see an ophthalmologist as soon as possible. Treatment must begin as to prevent blindness or other serious damage to you cornea, and you should also remove and clean your contact lenses, just in case.

Fungal Keratisis Treatment

Once you visit your ophthalmologist, he or she will have several recommendations after they determine if you have fungal keratisis. First among those will be anti fungal eye drops and oral medications, which in most cases will be sufficient to quell your symptoms. However, if the fungal infection is too far along, your ophthalmologist may recommend surgery, and if it is severe enough, you may have to have a corneal transplant. Fortunately, this surgery has a high success rate and will replace the damaged cornea tissue, with healthy cornea, tissue given by a donor.

However, corneal transplant surgery is a last resort and can be avoided if you regularly clean, store and hygienically handle your contact lenses. If you have any questions about this disease, or how you might be affected, you should contact us today for advice, and preventative steps, so you can avoid this serious medical condition.

Strides to Better Vision: Artificial Corneal Transplant with Human Cells

It is a fact that corneal blindness may affect up to 10 million people worldwide. According to the Eye Bank Association of America, there were about 52,000 corneal transplants performed in 2008, in the United States. Most specialists prefer to attempt corneal transplants by replacing them with corneal donor grafts. If the donor graft does not perform well then the patient is able to receive more donor tissue or an artificial implant of keratoprosthesis.

We recently found an article in the Euro Weekly that one such corneal transplant combined an artificial implant with human cells. The artificial cornea, comprised of two different human cells and bio-material of nano-technology, was designed by the Faculty of Histology at Granada University in Spain. The patient was suffering from corneal fibrosis, a serious condition that prevented him from seeing objects and colors.

After the operation, the patient reported that he gained significant relief in about 48 hours.

Is This A New Breakthrough?

For now it is too soon to tell if this procedure is effective for worldwide treatment. It was the first of its kind to use human cells with a corneal implant, but clinical trials are in need to determine its credibility. This technique is not likely to cure blindness, but the procedure is said to help alleviate pain, irritation and improve sight to a certain extent.

Our Corneal Correction

Most of our clients undergo conservative methods, such as wearing contact lenses and corrective eyewear. However, more serious problems require a full cornea transplant. In a corneal transplant procedure, more than half of damaged cornea is removed and replaced with a clear and healthy cornea.

Over time your vision will gradually improve, but the end result could take up to a year to regain stable vision.

New studies are being held to test the durability of combined human cells with corneal implants, but until then our traditional method has been the most effective in alleviating eye-related diseases. If you are struggling with your vision, schedule an appointment at Advanced Eye Medical Group and learn about the effects of corneal transplants.

Corneal Transplant Considerations

When to Consider a Corneal Transplant

More than 40,000 cornea transplants are performed each year. Since our vision plays such a crucial role in what the brain processes, it is important that our eyes always perform their very best. The cornea is the outermost layer of the eye, the clear surface covers the colored iris and the round pupil in a person’s eye. The purpose of a cornea is to focus the light that comes into our eyes so we can see clearly. To do this effectively, the corneas must be clear and cloud-free. When a person experiences blurred vision or even blindness, a corneal transplant can restore the vision of the eye when conservative methods of improvement fail.

A Corneal transplant, also known as keratoplasty, is a surgical procedure that restores part of the cornea with corneal tissue from a donor. A cornea transplant restores vision, reduces pain and improves the appearance of a damaged or diseased cornea. The staff at Advanced Eye Medical Group will remove about two-thirds of the damaged cornea and replace it with a clear and healthy donor cornea grafted on to the eye. Nylon sutures are applied to secure the new cornea and antibiotics prevent infection. After a few months the patient will see clear and be clean of any cloudiness.

According to Eye Care America, a corneal transplant is needed after prescription glasses or contacts cannot correct the corneal issues and when painful swelling develops. Conditions causing the need for corneal transplant include: corneal failure after previous eye surgery, a steep curve of the cornea develops, hereditary corneal failure and scarring after infections or injury. A corneal transplant will decimate all these conditions and restore proper vision to the eyes.

Benefits of a Corneal Transplant

Patients who receive a corneal transplant achieve the results they are after. The relief from the pain and discomfort is what every patient desires, and the pain disappears after the procedure is done.

Infections and disease in the cornea make vision blurry and can lead to blindness if left untreated. Immediate repair is necessary for the cornea and improves the patient’s vision.

When the cornea is damaged by injury, it becomes swollen or scarred. As a result, light that enters the eye is distorted and reduces vision. After a corneal transplant the patient will be cured of swelling and scars.

In hereditary cases, the patient has no way of escaping corneal infection, but a transplant can improve their vision and restore confidence in themselves.

When to See a Corneal Transplant Surgeon

As the individual’s eyesight continues to disrupt them from driving, working or reading that is a sign for necessary treatment. Excessive pain and discomfort should not occur in healthy corneas, especially after conservative measures have been applied. If surgery does not pose a concern to a patient’s health then a corneal transplant is the answer.

The cornea must remain clear in order for an individual to see from each eye. When light becomes distorted from an injury or disease the cornea needs to be replaced. Corneal transplant surgery at the Advanced Eye Medical Group can heal the pain and restore clear vision. Scarring, thinness and inherited conditions are likely to damage your corneas, but you do not have to live with poor vision forever. Ask your doctor if corneal transplant surgery is right for you. You will improve your vision and get your life back when you get a corneal transplant.