Health experts says monsoon may cause eye diseases

ISLAMABAD: Health experts have urged people to not to ignore symptoms like redness, swelling or burning sensation in the eyes and consult an ophthalmologist immediately, as it could be a conjunctivitis, corneal ulcer or stye that are quite common during monsoon.


“People enjoy the monsoon season but they are not aware that even direct contact between the eyes and the rain water can cause many types of infections,” said Kamal B Kapur, an ophthalmologist associated with city-based Sharp Eye Centre.

He said a corneal ulcer was one of the most serious infections during the monsoon. In such conditions, the cornea develops an open sore, and if wrongly medicated it can lead to blindness.

“Its symptoms are extreme pain, pus discharge and blurred vision. It immediately requires the attention of an eye specialist, so one should not delay,” said Kapur.

Vishal Dutta, an ophthalmologist said that during the monsoon, eye styes were very common and were usually caused due to the bacterial infections.

“Eye stye occurs in the form of a lump on the eyelid. Its symptoms are excruciating pain, pus discharge and redness over eyelids.

Its basic treatment is warm and cold compresses at home, eye drops and other medication. But if the size of the lump increases, the patient needs to visit an ophthalmologist,” he said.

Talking about eye-related hygiene during the monsoon, he said, “One should avoid sharing towels and similar personal items with others, because infections mostly spread through hands, clothes and other commonly touched items.”

“If own with conjunctivitis, they should wash hands after administering drops as that may lead to the spread of infection,” he said.

“In case of red eye, one should avoid over-the-counter eye drops as they may contain steroids which can be harmful, and instead seek expert advice.

Also one should avoid using contact lens during this period. Wearing glasses when travelling helps, he said.

Dutta urged people to always wash hands after coming from outside to prevent any sort of bacteria accumulation.

“Try to keep children away from puddles and water-logged areas. “Children often like to have fun in or around such places but they are highly bacteria- prone,” Dutta said.