First Time User? Sign Up Now
First Time User? Enroll now.
Home > Health Library > Contact Lens Problems: Infection
Keratitis refers to an inflammation of the cornea. Infection of the cornea is called infectious keratitis. It is the most serious complication of contact lens wear and can cause blindness.
Bacterial keratitis is the most common type of infectious keratitis. Overall, bacterial keratitis is among the least frequent complications of wearing contacts. But it is much more common in people who wear the lenses overnight.
Even though the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved some extended-wear lenses for 30-day use, many eye doctors recommend that people remove them every day.
In rare cases, viruses and fungi may cause keratitis. A germ that is often present in tap water causes a form of keratitis that is increasingly seen in contact lens wearers, especially those with soft lenses.
Noninfectious causes of keratitis in contact lens wearers include:
If you wear contact lenses and you have a painful, red eye, you may have infectious keratitis. Remove your lenses, and call your doctor immediately. You'll need antibiotic eyedrops to help treat the infection. Symptoms of bacterial keratitis may include:
Current as ofMay 5, 2019
Author: Healthwise StaffMedical Review: Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Current as of:
May 5, 2019
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2019 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
2800 Blue Ridge Road
Raleigh, NC 27607
UNC REX Healthcare4420 Lake Boone TrailRaleigh, NC 27607, USA919-784-3100
Chosen for Excellence
Co-Worker & Physician Login
UNC Health Talk
Copyright 2019 UNC Health Care. All rights reserved.