Contact lens wear and microbial keratitis.J Indian Med Assoc 2002; 100(11):664-6JI
Common types of contact lens are hard, rigid gas-permeable or soft lenses. Most lenses are worn on a daily basis. Cosmetic lenses are worn for non-medical indications. Microbial keratitis, a rare but most significant complication is discussed in this article. Pseudomonas aeruginosa and staphylococci are the most common organisms cause infective keratitis. Fungi and acanthamoeba are also responsible. The causes of increased susceptibility to infection are poor lens hygiene, adhesion of bacteria to lens surface and hypoxia. Preventing measures to be taken while wearing contact lens are discussed in a nutshell. Ocular pain, conjunctival infection, photophobia, epiphora and reduced vision are some of the symptoms of corneal infection. Diagnostic laboratory investigations are to be carried out immediately when a microbial corneal ulcer is suspected. Acanthamoeba can be cultured from corneal scrapes. Immunologically based fluorescein labelling techniques appear to be more sensitive than simple staining. The treatment consists of medical and surgical intervention. Corneal thinning, descemetocele formation and perforation are possible complications.