Keratitis: What You Need to Know About Causes, Treatments & Prevention

Keratitis About

What is Keratitis?

Keratitis is an eye condition that is caused by inflammation of the cornea, the clear outer layer of the eye. It can cause symptoms like redness and pain, blurred vision, sensitivity to light, and discharge from the eye. Keratitis can also lead to serious complications if left untreated, including vision loss and scarring of the cornea.

Causes of Keratitis

Keratitis can be caused by a variety of factors, including infections, dry eye syndrome, contact lens wear, eye trauma, and autoimmune diseases. Viral, bacterial, and fungal infections are the most common causes of keratitis.

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Infectious Keratitis

Infectious keratitis is caused by an organism, such as a virus, bacteria, fungus, or parasite, that invades the eye. These organisms can spread from other parts of the body or from contact with infected people or objects.

Dry Eye Syndrome

Dry eye syndrome is a condition where the eyes do not produce enough tears, leading to inflammation and irritation of the cornea. This can make the eye more vulnerable to infection.

Contact Lens Wear

Contact lens wear can cause inflammation of the cornea due to improper cleaning or use of the lenses, as well as an increased risk of infection.

Eye Trauma

Eye trauma, such as a corneal abrasion or foreign object in the eye, can damage the cornea and cause inflammation.

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Autoimmune Diseases

Certain autoimmune diseases, such as lupus, can lead to inflammation of the corneal tissue and cause keratitis.

Treatment of Keratitis

The treatment of keratitis depends on the underlying cause. For infectious keratitis, treatment often involves the use of antibiotics to clear up the infection. For dry eye syndrome, treatment typically involves the use of artificial tears and other medications to reduce inflammation. In cases of eye trauma, treatment may involve the use of antibiotics or further surgical intervention.

Prevention of Keratitis

To prevent keratitis, it is important to practice good eye hygiene, including wearing protective eyewear for sports or activities that may lead to eye trauma. It is also important to properly clean and store contact lenses and to see your eye doctor regularly for routine exams. If you suffer from dry eye syndrome, it is important to follow your doctor’s recommendations for lifestyle modifications and treatments.

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Conclusion

Keratitis is a serious eye condition that can cause symptoms like redness, pain, blurred vision, and sensitivity to light. It can be caused by a variety of factors, including infections, dry eye syndrome, contact lens wear, eye trauma, and autoimmune diseases. Treatment of keratitis depends on the underlying cause, and it is important to practice good eye hygiene and see your eye doctor regularly for routine exams.

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