Doctor explains dangers of novelty contact lenses

Local News

Halloween is only a week away. Every year, kids and adults alike dress up in costumes to look like their favorite superhero or monster and every year, costumes and makeup get more realistic and elaborate, even changing the shape and color of your eyes.

According to eye doctors, those novelty contact lenses can have harmful effects long after the trick-or-treating is over.

Dr. Paul Froula with University Eye Specialists is warning people about the dangers of novelty contact lenses.

“The chief danger of purchasing them outside of an eye doctor office or by prescription from a valid retailer is that you’re getting lenses, typically by nature, not fda approved,” said Dr, Froula.

Little is known about the lenses you’re putting in your eye if they are not FDA approved.

“You’re wondering what are these lenses made out of, how sanitary are they, are they sterile, how are they going to be cared for properly.,” said Dr. Froula. “So there are a lot of complications that can occur with contact lenses. We as eye specialists end up seeing most of those complications. 
Lenses that are not FDA approved can cause damage to the eye.

“Poor fit can cause that,” said Dr. Froula. “A lack of oxygen getting to the cornea can cause that. The cornea is very dependent, as you know, it doesn’t have blood vessels through it otherwise we couldn’t see through it, so, it’s very dependent on the air and the fluid beneath it to get it’s fair share of oxygen and nutrients

The lenses can also cause bacterial infections.

“There are bacteria out there in the world that are very dangerous which flourish in which we call an anaerobic environment, or an environment where there is no oxygen.”

According to the FDA, bacterial infections can be extremely rapid and result in corneal ulcers and even blindness in less than 24 hours. 

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