ReNu contact lens solution pulled for possible link to eye infectionApr 20, 2006 | Kansas State Collegian Bausch & Lomb Inc. has suspended shipments of their ReNu with MoistureLoc contact lens solution.
The decision comes after the Center for Disease Control reported a possible link between the solution and the fungal eye infection Fusarium keratitis, according to an April 10 Bausch & Lomb news release.
The infection, according to the release, has been reported in 109 patients in 17 states since June 2005. Of the 28 cases that have been investigated so far, there appears to be a disproportionate number of cases in which the patient reported using the solution.
No clear connection between ReNu with MoistureLoc and the infection has been established, however, according to the release.
"We at Bausch & Lomb believe that every effort should be made in assisting with this investigation in order to quickly identify the root cause of these infections," the release said.
Dr. Paul Bullock of Eyecare Associates of Manhattan, 1441 Anderson Ave., said fungal eye infections usually come from someone getting hit in the eye with a tree branch or a similar situation in which the eye is scratched.
"(Fungal infections) are very difficult to treat, and the drugs that are used to treat them are very expensive," he said.
Bullock said he recommends those contact wearers who currently are using any ReNu contact solution switch to another brand for the time being. Consumers should not, however, switch to a generic brand, he said, because they don't provide a high level of quality.
Bullock said he hasn't seen any cases of fungal infections, but he thinks the attention the issue has attracted has been a good way to remind his patients of the importance of taking proper care of their contact lenses.
"Contact lenses are medical devices," Bullock said. "Just like if a patient doesn't take their heart medication, taking improper care could cause big problems."
Some local retailers, like Target, 800 Commons Place, have taken steps to ensure customers aren't exposed to any tainted products.
"Target has voluntarily pulled all Bausch & Lomb brand ReNu with MoistureLoc contact solution from store shelves," said Joshua Thomas with Target Media Relations.
Because so many students are not from the Manhattan area, many K-State contact wearers haven't heard about the recall because they don't see a local eye care professional.
"I do use ReNu, but I use the No-rub solution," said Julie Piere, junior in human resource management. "I haven't even heard of the recall though. I guess it kind of worries me that I might get a fungus in my eyes using this stuff."
According to the news release, ReNu MoistureLoc users who wish to either switch to a different type of ReNu solution or get a refund for their solution can get more information at www.bausch.com/renu.