Covid-19 and Eyes Updates

Covid-19 Level 4 Lockdown

We are now closed by government order until further notice.
If you require anything at all that is eye or vision related, we would encourage you to contact us. We cannot physically see you as a patient but we may be able to offer help or guidance.

Eye Emergencies

There are really only 3 eye conditions that really stand out as needing urgent attention. If you are not sure or think you have developed an eye problem please contact me on optom@highburyeye.co.nz or 0211810738 - a photo would help too. If that is not possible then you'd need to present to an A+E medical centre which will still be operating during the Level 4 Shutdown (such as Shore Care Ph: 09 4867777).

Eye Infection Conjunctivitis infections are often mild, where the white part of the eye becomes red and inflammed. There may also be irritation, excessive watering or other discharge. We normally treat conjunctivitis but it can resolve without treatment. A more serious infection is a corneal ulcer, which are more common in contact lens wearers who do not follow correct lens care or from injury. Corneal ulcers are usually very painful, and can result in decreased vision and sensitivity to light. They can be serious and can result in vision loss.

Retinal Detachments Retinal detachments are more common if you have a high myopic prescription >-6.00 or are over 65years old. Symptoms are normally sudden onset of flashing lights and floating things in your vision. Mostly, these symptoms are the result of a vitreous detachment which is not serious, but an eye exam is still needed to rule out retinal detachment which can lead to sight loss.

Acute Glaucoma Patients who see us regularly will be checked for Acute glaucoma risks - and preventative treatment would have been arranged. So the risk for this in our patients is low. However symptoms to watch out for would be normally in one eye only, a lot of pain, blurred vision, halo or glow around lights and a red eye. Symptoms will continue to worsen over hours. Urgent assessment and treatment is required.

contact lens cat

Web ordering

We have relocated stock to home, and we are getting courier pick-ups and drop-offs so online ordering from our website can continue as normal. Some contact lens products we can arrange to be sent direct from the manufacturers in Sydney. As contact lens manufactures also produce medical products we expect these lines of delivery to remain open. Please note delivery times may be longer though.

Can Covid-19 affect your eyes?

Covid-19 has been shown to have conjunctivitis like symptoms, ie red, watery and irritated eyes. However these eye related issues seem to appear late, after the onset of fever and respiratory issues. Similar viruses can also do this such as in cold/flu. In these cases the virus can cause a lot of irritation but will very rarely damage the eye in anyway. There are no eye drops to treat viral infections and the best treatment is to keep the eye comfortable with lubricant eye drops.

Covid-19 and Contact Lenses

There is currently no evidence to suggest that there is any increased risk of infection or contracting coronavirus through contact lens wear. Remember to follow strict hygiene measures, such as thorough handwashing, along with optimal wear and care procedures. These include replacing your lenses as prescribed, case hygiene for reusable lenses and avoiding lens wear if you are unwell (in particular with any cold or flu-like symptoms).

Avoid touching your eyes, especially in high risk environments, and remember to ask yourself these three questions each time you wear your lenses:

Do my eyes feel good with my lenses? There should be no discomfort.
Do my eyes look good? There should be no redness.
Do I see well? There should be no unusual blurring with either eye.
If you have any concerns, remove your contact lenses and contact us.

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