Teen Nearly Goes Blind After Parasite Grows On Contact, Eats Through Eye

PEMBROKE PINES, Fla. (CBS Tampa) — A high school senior nearly goes blind in one eye after a parasite grows on her contact lens and starts eating through her cornea.

WPLG-TV reports that doctors found that 18-year-old Ashley Hyde had an acanthamoeba infection, a microscopic parasite found in soil and water which can spread through contact lens and cuts, after she complained of severe pain in her left eye.

“They did multiple cultures which is where they scrape your eye,” Hyde told WPLG. “One time, they had to drill into my eye. It was really nasty.”

Hyde needs to undergo several months of treatment to deal with the rare infection.

Doctors warn that people need to clean their contact lens every day or use disposable contacts.

“Every day, we see people come in with contact lens related to infections, complications, ulcers,” Dr. Adam Clarin, an optometric physician, told WPLG. “There are all things that are potentially blinding.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, symptoms for acanthamoeba include fever, double vision and neurologic problems.

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