Girl Almost Goes Blind From Eye Parasite When She Doesn't Change Her Contact Lenses

Ewww! 4

If you wear contact lenses, be prepared to be totally grossed out. But to learn something super important too. Eighteen-year-old Ashley Hyde is kind of like I was at that age -- she failed to regularly change her contact lenses. You don't think it's that much of a big deal, right? I mean, what can happen to a contact lens? Except, you know, a parasite eating your eyeball?!! Poor Ashley, a senior in high school, must have been pretty busy with school, because for whatever reason, she wasn't changing her contact lenses enough, and a parasite took advantage of this little clear platform on which it could feast on Ashley's peeper.

Doctors were initially baffled by Ashley's persistent eye inflammation and blurred vision. So they -- I hope you're not eating -- drilled into her eyeball and took scrapings to analyze. This is where they found that a parasite was munching on her eye. Oh, god, that's so nasty.

Ashley told a local news station:

They did multiple cultures where they scrape your eye. One time, they had to drill into my eye. It was really nasty.

See? Like I said. Nasty. There really is no other word. Doctors said that if Ashley had waited any longer to get treatment, she could have gone blind.

I remember a time about Ashley's age, I was traveling across Europe. At the time, there weren't disposal lenses like now, so I had those lenses you wear for like a year. And I went waaaaay over their time limit. Plus, I don't think I was cleaning them very well. I had one little bag I was carrying and no way to see an optometrist. It was about the time I hit the Sahara Desert that I found I had a little cloud blurring my vision and realized there was a tiny fuzzy something growing on my contact. Yet I couldn't get new contacts, so I just kept wearing them. And wearing them.

By the time I got back to the States and was able to see a doctor, I had a bad scratch on my eyeball and couldn't wear contacts for awhile. Since then, I've worn daily disposables.

An eye doc tells Local10:

Every day, we see people come in with contact lens related to infections, complications, ulcers. These are all things that are potentially blinding.

So clean your lenses, people. Parasites are nothing to mess around with!

If you wear contact lenses, does this worry you?


Image via LookIntoMyEyes/Flickr

bad habits, general health


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mande... manderspanders

I used to wear contacts... first go round from 1998-2001 and then 2006-2007.  I, too, had the type of contacts that you had for a year and had to take out and clean daily.

I don't know why anyone would want to leave their contacts in... My eyes always dried out with them and it was soooo relieving to take them out at the end of the day.   I first got my contacts at 17 years old and I was diligent about not wearing them overnight and cleaning them on schedule - my worst fear was a contact sticking to my eye, then the potential for infection.

Just because they now have "extended" wear lenses that you can sleep in doesn't mean its a good idea.

Bruic... Bruickson

I commented on the other post about this girl. I will definitely be printing out the picture for my patients to see. Hopefully it will scare some into taking better care of their eyes!

jessi... jessicasmom1

ewww .. I am a on and off contact wearing girl .... But surely I took them out and sanitized and cleaned them daily ... I can not even imagine this

Graham Edgar

I wear monthlies and my optician says if I wear them my eye will grow extra veins and will damage my eyes wich then made me relise if I don't change and clean these then I could go blind :)

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