GRAPHIC IMAGES: Whether you're a contact lens wearer or not these photos have the power to make you go, 'ergh'. So, if you're of a delicate nature - you have been warned.A US eye doctor has shared the shocking images of a patient's eye to raise awareness of the risks of sleeping in contact lenses.A doctor from Vita Eye Clinic shared the photos showing the patient who had developed an ulcer and warned that if left untreated it could have led to blindness.
The post read: "'I sleep in my contacts all the time and I've never had a problem.'"As an eye doctor, I literally hear this daily. The pictures below show a referred case from the local urgent care, a subsequently cultured pseudomonas ulcer, and are the direct result of sleeping in contact lenses."Pseudomonas (bacteria) is an important cause of ocular morbidity and its opportunistic characteristics quickly lead to permanent blindness. This will be the fourth case of cultured pseudomonas that I've treated in my clinic."The bacteria explosively eats away at the patient's cornea in a matter of days leaving soupy, white necrosis (dead tissue) in its wake. I was able to start this patient on fortified antibiotic drops around the clock and recently steroids to reduce permanent scarring."While this patient's eye continues to drastically improve from baseline, she will very likely exhibit some form of residual vision loss even after treatment.
"To be very clear, I don't ever recommend sleeping in any brand of contact lenses. The risks outweigh the benefits every time. It takes seconds to remove your contacts but a potential lifetime of irreversible damage if you choose to leave them in.
"People need to see these images and remind themselves/family/friends to also be aware of contact lens misuse."The poster goes on to explain that eye's green-colour is due to a dye used to investigate the problem, which 'pools in areas of corneal compromise' so in this case the ulcer.
The doctor added that this didn't 'take years' to develop but actually formed in 'about 36 hours' due to the strain of bacteria involved. Scary stuff. In the UK, the NHS warns not to sleep in your lenses unless you've been told it's fine to do by your contact lens practitioner.