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Brides becoming blind after using contact lenses for beauty

Rawalpindi: Trend of using contact lenses for cosmetic reasons in on the increase in Pakistan which is leading to very serious eye and vision problems, a leading eye hospital warned Wednesday.

Roadside beauty parlours and quacks are providing inferior quality contact lenses to women seeking enhanced appearance which is leading many into permanent blindness, Al-Shifa Trust Eye Hospital said.

We are receiving many newly married women from middle and low income groups with coloured contact lenses affixed to their cornea in a way that only to save patient is to remove the cornea which push them into permanent blindness for the rest of their lives, said Executive Director of the hospital Brig (Retd) Rizwan Ullah Asghar.

He said that many girls use substandard coloured contact lenses for good looks before marriage without knowing the negative effects like serious eye injuries and inflamed cornea.

After experiencing problems, most consult common practitioners only to make matter worst, he added.

Many boys and girls who want to make an impact on special occasions by changing the apparent colour of the eyes end up developing ulcers or losing sight because their choice, Rizwan Ullah Asghar informed.

Those who wear quality contact lenses are not immune to the problems; the lenses causes change in the cornea structure, turnover, tear production, oxygen and carbon dioxide levels, loss of vision, keratitis, and other dozens of problems, said Dr Ayesha Khalid, a specialist in Al-Shifa Trust Eye Hospital Rawalpindi.

She said that loose or tight lens, poor lens care, damaged lens, and dried lens are some of the issues most of the educated users would ignore to pay the price later.

Dr Ayesha Khalid informed that trend of contact lenses in on the rise globally; presently some 120 million peoples use these lenses while the percentage of contact lens related diseases among them is rising at an alarming level because of the lack of awareness about appropriate handling, cleaning and disinfection techniques.

Al-Shifa Trust has taken the issue very seriously and has been creating awareness through free eye camps, seminars, workshops, print and electronic material and media.

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