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ongoing eye irritation
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ongoing eye irritation

I am 27 years old and I wear contacts.  I started having an eye irritation in my left eye about 3 months ago.  Sometimes it burns or tears up slightly.  I have none of these symptoms when I have my contacts IN my eyes.  I went to the opthamalogist he said he couldn't find anything initially.  Upon another followup I was told I have blepharitis with chalazion and I was told to do starch compresses, followed by sterilid 3x/day and maxitrol drops 3x/day (have been using these steroid drops for about 1 month now)  My eye feels better after the starch and sterilid but the irritation always comes back.  Sometimes I also feel a pressure in my eye too.  This pupil is also larger than my other eye (however I think this is congenital b/c the pupil is larger in a pictures of me from 9 years ago) Couple questions:  Is it ok to be using sterilid 3x/day and am I at risk for anything with the optical steroid use for the past month?  How long do you have to be using a steroid such as maxitrol before it becomes dangerous?  Any suggestions on any other tx ideas?
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233488_tn?1310696703
Hello kb727

It is not a good idea to use steroids for longer than a few weeks for minor problems. Wearing contacts that may be irritating your eye AND using steroids significantly raises the risk of an infected corneal ulcer as well as the usual steroid problems of increased pressure in the eye (steroid glaucoma), cataract formation and reduced resistance to infections.

Your contact lens could be the problem. It could be dry eyes with or without contact induced irritation. When you wear your contacts it numbs the cornea and you are not nearly as sesnsitive as when you take them out. After you take your contacts out the feeling returns over 30-60 minutes then you can "feel" the pain and discomfort.

I suggest a consultation with another ophthalmologist for another opinion. I think you need to discuss the importance of getting off maxitrol. Ask to have a Schirmer Tear test done to screen for dry eyes.

Using Sterilids 3 X day is not a problem.

One out of five patients in our large lasik practice in a midwest city is having lasik because they're having trouble with their contact lens. It's a common problem.

JCH III MD Eye Physician & Surgeon
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