A new study has found that people who have been using ultraviolet C germicidal lamps (UVC) to get rid of coronavirus might put themselves at a higher risk of eye injuries. Experts from Florida have found at least seven cases where people have been identified with UVC damage to the cornea. This condition has caused a burning sensation and sensitivity to light after they have treated themselves with these lamps. This report has been published in the journal Ocular Immunology and Inflammation. Dr. Jesse Sengillo, an ophthalmologist at the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute of the University of Miami Health System has said that these lamps affect the clear surface of the eye with the wavelength of its light. The clear part of the eye is quite susceptible to such kind of light.
Dr. Sengillo has said that people have reported eye damage, which looks like sunburn to the cornea. This condition is quite painful and takes days to heal. People, who suffer from this condition, find it difficult to open their eyes, as they are susceptible to light, red, and itchy. Some patients with this issue feel a severe burning sensation in their eyes. Experts have said that the burning sensation does not happen immediately; therefore, most patients do not realize that they have injured their eyes while using these lamps. Dr. Sengillo has advised that people who want to use these lamps, should turn it on and leave the room until it is time to switch it off. He has said people who feel a burning sensation in their eyes after using these germicidal lamps, should immediately consult their healthcare providers for some kind of ointments to subside the burning sensation. They can take antibiotics as well as these injuries are prone to further infection, said the experts.
Experts have said that they have seen an increase in the cases of cornea damage as the cases of COVID19 are shooting up in Miami. People with such conditions have flooded the Eye Institute in Miami. Experts from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine have said that such UVC devices are good antimicrobials, which might be effective in inactivating the virus during this global pandemic. The light emitted by these lamps is relatively harmless; however, people might not be aware that they should not be looking at it directly. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as well have advised that these UVC lamps might be able to eliminate the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which leads to COVID19; nevertheless, people need to be careful about eye or skin burn due to improper installation of the lamps in the room.