Cornea being one of the outermost parts of the eye, is susceptible to an infection known as fungal keratitis. Also known as corneal ulcer, the infection could cause inflammation in the cornea, leading to problems in vision.
Symptoms of fungal keratitis
Redness and pain in the eyes are two of the most common symptoms of fungal keratitis. The other symptoms of the infection include:
- Discharge from the eyes
- Frequent tearing
- Sensitivity to bright light
- Blurred vision
- Swelling in the eyes
If you have experienced these symptoms, there are chances that you have fungal keratitis. We would suggest you see a doctor if the symptoms persist. Disha Eye hospitals are a team of some of the best eye specialists in Kolkata who specialize in treating different types of eye infections, and conditions. Book an appointment today. Consult one of our eye specialists in order to receive a proper diagnosis and treatment.
Causes of fungal keratitis
Fungal keratitis occurs when certain fungi reaches the cornea. Fungi that commonly cause fungal keratitis belong to Candida species, Aspergillus species, and Fusarium species.
Candida species are often found in the human skin, whereas Aspergillus, and Fusarium species live in the environment. Eye trauma that involves a plant, thorn, or stick increase the risk of fungal keratitis. If you have suffered an eye trauma in which a plant part has caused the injury, schedule a check-up at the earliest.
Keratitis, in general, can occur due to other reasons such as:
Bacterial infection – is one of the most common causes of keratitis. Bacterial infection is common in people who wear contact lenses. Carrying on with poor contact lens hygiene; not taking enough care to store or clean them properly increase the risk of bacterial infection-related keratitis.
Using a contact lens solution or an eye drop that is contaminated also increases the risk of keratitis. People who wear extended-wear contact lenses stand at higher risk of bacterial infection-related keratitis.
Viral infection – such as common cold or chicken pox virus could cause keratitis if it settles in the eyes. Hence, it is advisable to wash your hands before touching your eyes when you are infected with a viral infection. The best alternative however, is to avoid touching your eyes with your hands.
Prevention of fungal keratitis
While it’s not possible to entirely prevent fungal keratitis and keratitis in general, you sure can take precautions to lower the risk. Some of these practical steps include:
- Wear a pair of safety eye glasses when trekking or playing in parks
- Store contact lenses in a clean storage unit and use a fresh solution to store the lenses
- Clean your contact lenses regularly. Following this routine helps to lower the risk of breeding of the infection-causing bacteria.
- Avoid wearing your contact lenses when swimming and showering.
Diagnosis and treatment
Eye specialists will examine the cornea in order to acquire a proper diagnosis of the infection. They may swab under the eyelid; performed to test the infection. Doctors generally recommend patients to stop wearing contact lenses until a proper diagnosis is found.
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