A brand of eyedrops that may have killed one person and harmed 68 others, some of whom required surgical removal of the affected eye, has been recalled by US authorities. The eyedrops were contaminated with a drug-resistant bacterial infection.
EzriCare Artificial Tears were advised not to be used by the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), who warned that they might be connected to a Pseudomonas aeruginosa outbreak.
After surgery, the bacterium Pseudomonas can lead to infections in the blood, lungs, or other regions of the body. A 2019 CDC analysis estimates that the multi-drug resistance bacteria results in 32,600 infections among hospitalized patients and 2,700 projected fatalities in the US per year.
Last month, the FDA issued a voluntary recall of the Global Pharma brand, warning it was related to hospitalization and blindness. Customers were instructed to stop using the brand and take them back to the store where they were purchased.
From May of last year to February, the agencies reported cases in 12 states: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Nevada, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wisconsin.
The outbreak of the uncommon strain of illness, which had never been seen in the US previously, was initially connected to ten distinct brands of eyedrops that were made in India and smuggled into the country. Also, the FDA has ordered the recall of eyedrops sold by Pharmedica and Apotex.
The majority of patients with Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections reported using eyedrops or synthetic tears. Pseudomonas was discovered in patient-owned bottles, according to the CDC.
You may read more about the disorders in our earlier postings, where we covered additional facts related to them:
- Monkeypox Declared Global Public Health Emergency
- A Person Dies After Being Infected With a Brain-eating Amoeba
Eight individuals lost their vision, and four had their eyes surgically removed, in addition to the one death. Frequent signs and symptoms include eye discharge that is yellow, green, or clear, soreness or discomfort, redness, impaired vision, and increased sensitivity to light.
A spokesman for EzriCare said last month that the company (as reported by The Guardian) –
“not aware of any testing that definitively links the Pseudomonas aeruginosa outbreak to EzriCare Artificial Tears”.
The company added (as reported by Ezricare)-
“To the greatest extent possible, we have been contacting customers to advise them against continued use of the product.”
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