Consult Doctors. FREE.
Real Doctors, Expert Answers
Connect with Facebook Connect with Google For Doctors
By creating an account, you are indicating that you have read and accepted the DoctorxDentist Terms of Use.
Consult Doctors. FREE.
Real Doctors, Expert Answers
By creating an account, you are indicating that you have read and accepted the DoctorxDentist Terms of Use.
Registration Progress
Step 1: Indicate Topics of Interests
Step 2: Follow Relevant Doctors
Complete!
What are your interests?
Please select at least 3 interests.
NEXT
NEXT
Registration Progress
Step 1: Indicate Topics of doctors
Step 2: Follow Relevant Doctors
Complete!
Follow your favourite doctors
We found some doctors you may like. Click continue to follow them.
CONTINUE
CONTINUE
Consult Doctors. FREE.
Real Doctors, Expert Answers
Continue with Facebook Continue with Google

or

OOPS!

SOMETHING WENT WRONG.

PLEASE TRY AGAIN.

OOPS! SOMETHING

WENT WRONG.

PLEASE TRY AGAIN.

Disclaimer: Any answers provided are for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment.

Continue with Facebook Continue with Google

Disclaimer: Any answers provided are for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment.

YOUR QUESTION HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY SUBMITTED.

YOUR QUESTION

HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY

SUBMITTED.

YOUR ANSWER HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY SUBMITTED.

YOUR ANSWER

HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY

SUBMITTED.

YOUR QUOTE REQUEST HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY SUBMITTED.

OUR DOCTORS WILL GET BACK TO YOU SHORTLY!

YOUR QUOTE REQUEST

HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY

SUBMITTED.

OUR DOCTORS WILL GET

BACK TO YOU SHORTLY!

YOUR THREAD HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY CREATED.

HEAD OVER TO FORUM PAGE NOW

TO JOIN THE DISCUSSION

YOUR THREAD

HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY

CREATED.

HEAD OVER TO THE FORUM PAGE NOW

TO JOIN THE DISCUSSION!

YOUR REVIEW HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY SUBMITTED.

THANK YOU.

YOUR REVIEW

HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY

SUBMITTED.

THANK YOU.

OOPS!

THERE IS SOMETHING

WRONG WITH YOUR EMAIL.

PLEASE TRY AGAIN.

OOPS! THERE IS

SOMETHING WRONG

WITH YOUR EMAIL.

PLEASE TRY AGAIN.

YOUR EMAIL HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY SUBSCRIBED.

THANK YOU.

YOUR EMAIL

HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY

SUBSCRIBED.

THANK YOU.

YOUR CONSULTATION HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY SUBMITTED.

OUR DOCTORS WILL

GET BACK TO YOU SHORTLY.

YOUR CONSULTATION

HAS BEEN

SUCCESSFULLY

SUBMITTED.

OUR DOCTORS

WILL GET

TO YOU

SHORTLY.

MESSAGES TO

Poor Contact Lens Hygiene Is The Most Common Cause Of Corneal Ulcers; An Ophthalmologist Explains Your Treatment Options

Poor Contact Lens Hygiene Is The Most Common Cause Of Corneal Ulcers; An Ophthalmologist Explains Your Treatment Options undefined

When the word ulcer is mentioned, you'd probably think that it refers to the type that's found in our mouths. However, did you know that there are other types of ulcers you should be wary of?

A corneal ulcer is an erosion or an open sore on the surface of the cornea. A DoctorxDentist reader wanted to find out if corneal ulcers heal by themselves, and the best course of treatment for this condition. 

Dr E-Shawn Goh, an experienced ophthalmologist shares his professional advice. 

What are corneal ulcers?

corneal ulcer singapore

A close up of the corneal ulcer during an eye examination

A corneal ulcer refers to an inflammatory condition of the cornea. It develops when there is a break in the corneal epithelium (a membranous tissue composed of one or more layers of cells). 

structure of cornea

Essentially, a corneal ulcer can be described as an open sore of the cornea.

It's caused primarily by infections

corneal ulcer caused by wearing contact lens

Corneal ulcers are most commonly caused by bacterial, viral, fungal or protozoal infections. Corneal ulcers can also be caused by other factors including physical and chemical trauma, corneal over-exposure. 

Poor contact lens hygiene is one of the most common causes. [1]

Treatment usually starts off intensive 

eye lubricant for corneal erosion singapore

Treatment for corneal ulcers usually starts off more intensive because some ulcers can lead to vision loss and blindness. It tapers off once your infection is brought under control.

Your doctor might prescribe antibiotics as well as antiviral or antifungal medications. [2]

In cases of viral, fungal, or protozoal infections, the treatment duration may be longer.

On rare occasions, surgical procedures may be required

eye surgery for corneal infection

Surgical procedures including debridement (the surgical removal of the surface layer of cells) or corneal transplantations may be suggested by doctors in severe cases.

However, Dr E-Shawn emphasised that this rarely happens. 

Immune suppression is used for non-infective causes of corneal ulcers

If your corneal ulcer did not stem from an infection, immune suppression treatment is usually carried out. This includes topical steroids and steroid-sparing agents.

Severe inflammation may require extra measures

corneal ulcer singapore

In other rare cases that include severe inflammatory conditions, systemic immunosuppression may be required.

Your doctor may also implement anti-infective treatments and even surgical procedures that involve segmental corneal transplantation or conjunctival recession surgery alongside treatments for more effective outcomes.

Corneal ulcers almost never resolve themselves

According to Dr E-Shawn, corneal ulcers almost always require treatment. However, there are extremely rare cases where a mild corneal ulcer seen in a patient may resolve itself (but these are very infrequent).

Corneal ulcers are sometimes mistaken for corneal erosion

corneal ulcer singapore

Corneal erosion is a similar condition that causes recurring eye discomfort, redness and pain or irritation. Generally, it requires the frequent application of eye lubricant that helps the corneal epithelium heal.

Often, corneal erosion may go long periods without active treatment but ophthalmologists might need to step in to assist the cornea with re-epithelialisation (when an open wound is covered by epithelial cells) if the condition becomes recurrent.

Always practice good eye hygiene

contact lens hygiene singapore

If left unchecked, corneal ulcers can become serious and might even result in loss of vision or blindness. Always practice good eye hygiene and go for regular checks.

 

Would you like to ask any related health questions? 

You can Ask A Doctor right away, or view the complete list of DoctorxDentist Sessions.


References: 

 1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8838989

 2. https://www.verywellhealth.com/corneal-ulcers-an-overview-3422069 

 3. http://smj.sma.org.sg/1802/1802smj6.pdf

228 views 4 Jan 2019 Medically reviewed by Dr E-Shawn Goh on 19 May 2019.
Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other answers tagged Eye & LASIK or ask your own question now FOR FREE.
Call
Dr E-Shawn Goh