Stacey Peoples says she contracted eye infectionAcanthamoeba Keratite after swimming in contact lenses reported CBS4 in September.
The infection made her blind in one eye until she got a corneal transplant.
- Acanthamoeba Keratitis is extremely rare in the United States, but most cases occur in contact lenses.
Experts say that contact holders should never rinse or store lenses in tap water and avoid swim or swim in their lenses.
A woman who contracted a parasitic eye infection that left her partially blind, rejects her painful story to give others a warning: Never swim while wearing contact lenses.
Stacey Peoples, a Colorado teacher, thinks trial began back in 2014, when she went for a regular bath in a pool with her son, Colorado reported CBS affiliate CBS4 back in September. By that time she had contact lenses.
About a week later her eyes became red and itchy and started to hurt. People said to "Today", even in September. During the following weeks her condition worsened and the pain intensified.
"It felt like someone snapped a rubber band in my eye every second, but then the eye back felt like … it would explode through the head on the back," she said "Today." "The side of my face felt like a constant migraine."
Soon she lost sight of her eyes and became so sensitive to light that she could not work or drive.
"I was suicide for a few days. If I had not had family and unbelievable support, I'm not sure what had happened," she said. "Today."
Eventually, a corneal specialist identified the root cause: People were affected Acanthamoeba keratitis, a rare eye infection most common in contact lenses.
Acanthamoeba Keratitis is caused by an amoeba, and contact users are more vulnerable
Acanthamoeba keratitis occurs when the microscopic single-celled amoeba Acanthamoeba infects the clear outer shell of the eye or cornea, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Acanthamoeba are usually found in air, soil and water.
Symptoms may include eye pain and redness, blurred vision, sensitivity to light and a feeling that something is in your eye. CDC recommends that everyone with these symptoms see their ophthalmologist because they are not treated Acanthamoeba Keratitis can lead to severe pain, vision loss or blindness.
The infection can happen to someone, but about 85% of Acanthamoeba Keratitis cases occur in CDC contact lenses. However, it is important to know that the total number of cases is extremely low. In developed countries, there are approximately one to 33 cases of infection per million contact carriers, says CDC.
Doctors say they removed 27 contact lenses from a woman's eye
Contact users have a higher risk of infection because soft contacts can act as a fungus, absorb contaminated water and allow contaminants such as Acanthamoeba To enter the eye through the cornea, dr. Thomas Steinemann, a clinical spokesman for the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), declared the "Today" program.
And among people who use contacts, some activities can increase the risk of getting Acanthamoeba keratitis, including false lens infection, tap water lenses, swim or swim while wearing lenses, according to CDC.
"Our warning is: Contact lenses and water do not mix," said Steinemann "Today" program.
People endured 15 months of "acid drops" as treatment
CDC says that a healthcare provider can decide which prescription drugs are needed to treat a case of Acanthamoeba keratitis.
According to the AAO website, medical treatment for the infection is "still developed" but successful treatment has been reported with combinations of antibiotics, antiparasitic, antimycotic and antiviral drugs.
People were prescribed eye drops that she had to use for 15 months, but they were so painful to use as she described them as "acid drops," reported "Today."
The infection is extremely rare, but you can take measures to prevent it
Steinemann told "Today" shows that contact holders should not shower or swim while wearing lenses. If you swim in lenses, he allows you to remove them and disinfect them as soon as you get out of the water. (Or throw them away if they are single use.)
By the way: Keeping your contacts away from water helps to prevent more than just onecanthamoebaKeratitis. This habit is an element of good hygiene in the contact lens, which can also reduce the risk of other eye infections.
In its explanation of correct contact management, AAO says that line bearers should always remove contacts before bathing, bathing or doing something where water may come into your eyes. The organization adds that lenses should never be rinsed with or stored in tap water.
People regained their lost vision after a corneal transplant
In April 2015, people underwent corneal transplant that restored the vision she had lost, CBS4 reported. That experience has moved her to become a proponent of organ donation, added the report.
"[The transplant] gave me back my life, it gave me my job back, it gave me my children back, "she told CBS4." It was incredible. True miracle. "
People did not respond immediately to INSIDER's request for comments.
Check out her full interview with CBS4 below:
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