Home / Health / Athlete blinded by horrible eye infection caused by wearing contact lenses in the shower, warns others

Athlete blinded by horrible eye infection caused by wearing contact lenses in the shower, warns others

Contact lenses are not suitable for everyone, but if you use them, you must follow the rules of eye hygiene to prevent pests from getting into your eyes. Ask this man from the UK, who lost the sight of one eye because of it.

Nick Humphreys, 29, of Shrewsbury, Shropshire, plays amateur football and needs glasses. Playing contact sports with glasses seems dangerous, so naturally, the players who need them will opt for contacts. "At mid-twenties, I really started to get into physical exercise and at the time, I thought my glasses were a huge obstacle," he explained.

He overcame his fear of using contact lenses and, after being accustomed to wearing them, he would wear them almost every day. "On a normal morning, I woke up, passed my lenses and headed to the gym before going to work, then jumped in the shower before going to the office," he said. , as reported by The Sun.

Humphreys often wore his contacts in the shower and, one day in January 2018, he noticed a painful scratch in the eye and used eye drops to help control the pain while waiting for the results of the optician's test . The results indicated that he was suffering from an infection caused by acanthamoeba keratitis (AK), a small organism that could lodge in the eye by a scratch or a small cut.

Two months later, while on his way to work, he completely lost the vision of his right eye and still has not returned. "I went to work and my vision went completely into my right eye," he recalls.

Because of the pain in his eyes, Humphreys could not leave the house, let alone go to work, but he knew he had to somehow come back to see the doctor.

"I do not know how I managed not to break down, but I was quick to understand that I had to go back to the hospital," Humphreys told the Sun.

In addition to the pain and lack of vision of one eye, the physical appearance of the injury has had adverse consequences on one's mental state. "I felt at my lowest level and the only thing that would cheer me up – playing football – was no longer an option," he said.

"The reality of the situation had really hit me, I let myself go since all this happened and I had a monotonous eye that I had to cover with an eye patch, which looked like something coming out from The Exorcist. . "

Now, two operations have eliminated the infection from his eye and he is able to participate in the activities he likes, but his eyesight has not come back yet.

"After catching the infection, I went to the gym every other day and played football three times a week.I was confined to the house for six months and I lost the will. to live, "he told Daily Mail. "Obviously, I did not want to be blind in my right eye, but at least, knowing that the infection was gone, I could begin to regain a normal life. I could finally go back to work and start going to the gym.

Stock Illustration – Shutterstock | Valeri Potapova

The recovering footballer is now helping to raise awareness of the dangers of swimming or showering under contact through the charity Fight For Sight.

"Honestly, I can say that if I had the slightest idea that it was even a distant possibility, I would never have made contacts. It is crucial that people know that this is a reality and that it can happen simply by taking a shower. If I regain my eyesight, I will never be in contact again, "he said.

In a study conducted in 2018 by researchers from the UCL and Moorfields Eye Hospital, eye infections among contact lens wearers have tripled in the last seven years, Science Daily reported.

"This infection is still quite rare and usually affects 2.5 to 100,000 contact lens users a year in southeastern England, but it is largely preventable. This increase in the number of cases highlights the need for contact lens users to be aware of the risks, "said lead author John Dart of Moorfields Eye Hospital.

While anyone can be infected with AK, contact lens users are most at risk.

Stock Illustration – Shutterstock | Kateryna Kon

Why should not you swim or shower while wearing contact lenses?

Swimming or showering while wearing contact lenses exposes the person to blindness due to a parasitic infection.

Acanthamoeba keratitis (AK), a waterborne amoeba present around the world, can infect the cornea – the "transparent window" located in the front of the eye.

The amoeba can get stuck in the eye, causing a total loss of vision in the space of a few weeks.

An analysis of all incidents recorded over the past 18 years has shown that 86% of patients had swam with their lenses, according to a study published in the British Journal of Ophthalmology.

Stock Illustration – Shutterstock | Maridav

Contact lenses can create small abrasions in the eye, which facilitates the attachment of the amoeba when the eye comes into contact with water.

Scientists have highlighted the risk of rinsing lenses with tap water.

The Acanthamoeba, which feeds on bacteria, can be present in all forms of water, including lakes, oceans, rivers, pools, spas and showers.

They can also be found in tap water and soil.

The treatment usually consists of antiseptic drops that kill the amoeba, which may require every hour for the first few days, even during sleep.

Source: Moorfields Eye Hospital

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