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Data Behind Contact Lens Wear and Care Recommendations

Wearing and caring for contact lenses properly is critical to keeping the eyes healthy and preventing eye infections; however, the majority of contact lens wearers 1 do not practice proper contact lens hygiene. Since 2006, in the US there have been three outbreaks of Acanthamoeba keratitis 2,3 and Fusarium keratitis 4—both of which are very serious and sometimes blinding types of eye infections. These outbreaks have brought attention to contact lens wearer hygiene and the need for consistent information about how to wear and care for contact lenses to help prevent such infections.

CDC—with feedback from experts in optometry, ophthalmology, opticianry, and infectious diseases—encourages contact lens wearers to follow these recommendations, which are based on data from a number of studies. The articles listed here give information on each CDC recommendation but are not intended to be a comprehensive list of references. For additional articles related to contact lens wear and care, visit the Publications, Data, & Statistics page.

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  1. Sokol JL, Mier MG, Bloom S, Asbell PA. A study of patient compliance in a contact lens-wearing population. CLAO J. 1990;16(3):209-13.
  2. Verani JR, Lorick SA, Yoder JS, Beach MJ, Braden CR, Roberts JM, Conover CS, Chen S, McConnell KA, Chang DC, Park BJ, Jones DB, Visvesvara GS, Roy SL. National outbreak of Acanthamoeba keratitis associated with use of a contact lens solution, United States. Emerg Infect Dis. 2009;15(8):1236-42.
  3. Ross J, Roy SL, Mathers WD, Ritterband DC, Yoder JS, Ayers T, Shah RD, Samper ME, Shih CY, Schmitz A, Brown AC. Clinical characteristics of Acanthamoeba keratitis infections in 28 states, 2008 to 2011. Cornea. 2014;33(2):161-8.
  4. Chang DC, Grant GB, O’Donnell K, Wannemuehler KA, Noble-Wang J, Rao CY, Jacobson LM, Crowell CS, Sneed RS, Lewis FM, Schaffzin JK, Kainer MA, Genese CA, Alfonso EC, Jones DB, Srinivasan A, Fridkin SK, Park BJ. Multistate outbreak of Fusarium keratitis associated with use of a contact lens solution. JAMA. 2006;296(8):953-63.