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Eye Contact Lens. 2015 Mar;41(2):84-6. doi: 10.1097/ICL.0000000000000068.

Microbiological study of therapeutic soft contact lenses used in the treatment of recurrent corneal erosion syndrome.

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Department of Ophthalmology, School of Medicine, Pusan National University & Medical Research Institute, Pusan National University Hospital, Pusan, Korea.



To determine the bacteriological spectrum of the removed therapeutic soft contact lenses (TSCLs) and to establish efficacy of prophylactic antibiotics on TSCLs used for 2 weeks for treatment of patients with recurrent corneal erosion syndrome (RCES).


This study included idiopathic RCES treated using highly oxygen-permeable silicone hydrogel contact lenses (CLs), and treated 4 times per day with topical tobramycin 3% for 2 weeks. After TSCLs were applied for 2 weeks, the lenses were removed with sterile forceps under which a speculum was inserted, and placed on blood agar with the inner face down. The TSCLs were analyzed for bacterial colonization, and antibiotic susceptibility tests were performed for the isolates, using disk diffusion.


Of the 40 lenses analyzed, 9 (22.5%) yielded positive cultures. Staphylococcus epidermidis was the most commonly isolated microorganism; there were five methicillin-sensitive coagulase-negative staphylococci and two methicillin-resistant coagulase-negative staphylococci. Furthermore, we found two lenses that were colonized by Enterobacter gergoviae and Citrobacter freundii. All cultured bacteria showed intermediate or complete sensitivity to ciprofloxacin, tigecycline, and tobramycin. Despite bacterial colonization in 9 CLs, no clinical signs of infectious keratitis were found in any of the patients with prophylactic topical tobramycin 3%.


In case of using TSCLs for 2 weeks, tobramycin or ciprofloxacin may be useful as prophylactic topical antibiotics for preventing secondary corneal infections. Considering currently growing incidence of ciprofloxacin-resistant ocular isolates, tobramycin seems to be a reasonable prophylactic topical antibiotic susceptible broad spectrum of bacteria in clinics.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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