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Eye Drops Recall in US: Bacterial Outbreak Leads to Infection, Blindness, and Eyeball Removal


A rare strain of bacteria called “Pseudomonas aeruginosa” has been linked to 68 infections across 16 states, according to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The drug-resistant bacteria was transferred to the infected via eye drops, and has been connected to one death and many severe injuries. Eight patients are reported to have lost their vision and four needed their eyeballs surgically removed. Most of the patients diagnosed with the infection reported using eye drops and artificial tears, according to the CDC. Learn more about the eye drops recall — and whether you should be concerned — below.

Why People Use Eyedrops

There are lots of reasons. Eyedrops keep the eye lubricated and relieve dryness and irritation, which many people experience for reasons including aging, hormone changes, autoimmune disease, or allergic eye disease. In an injured eye, artificial tears also promote surface healing, reduce the feeling of a surface scratch, and flush out any residual contaminating or harmful particles. According to a Statista estimate based on the US Census data and Simmons National Consumer Survey (NHCS), a total of 117.45 million Americans used eye drops and eye wash in…

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