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ReNu contact lens solution spells Agony

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I soaked my contact lenses overnight in Bausch & Lomb's ReNu with MoistureLoc Multi-Purpose Solution. The next morning when I put my contacts back in, my eyes started to burn and they got a whole lot worse. The pain was like someone was stabbing me repeatedly in my eyes with needles. That was June, 2005 and I'm still suffering.

Susan Parks (not her real name upon her lawyer's advice) from Kentucky:

ReNu lens cleaning solution from Bausch & Lomb, eye infection fungasThursday, June 23: I soaked my contacts overnight in a new type of Renu solution, I hadn't used this brand before. The next morning, just a few minutes after I put my contacts in, my eyes were burning. I went to work and the burning just got worse. Then one of my co-workers asked what was wrong with my eyes - they were blood red. I took my contacts out; little did I know I wouldn't be putting those ones back in again - ever. (I can't wear glasses due to RK surgery 12 years ago).

Friday, June 24: I woke up and my eyes were matted shut. They were burning and the pain was excruciating. My husband and I were leaving on vacation; I just assumed it was pink eye so on the four-hour drive to the lake we stopped at a drug store and I bought some eye drops. The pain didn't go away, neither did the swelling.

Saturday, June 25: I could barely open my eyes. My husband took me to the local hospital emergency room. It was a small town and the on-call doctor freaked out when I took off my sunglasses. He literally gasped! He really didn't know what to do and gave me an oral antibiotic. No ophthalmologists were working so we went back to our boat on the lake.

Sunday, June 26: I didn't sleep a wink - nobody would have been able to sleep in this condition. The pain was like someone was stabbing me repeatedly in my eyes with needles. My husband took my back to ER and the same doctor tried to flush my eyes. He put me under a huge light and this too was painful. But nothing was in my eyes. He did his best. Then he realized I was dehydrated because I was so distraught -- I hadn't been eating or drinking. He gave me two bags of IV and told me to see an ophthalmologist as soon as I got home.

Monday, June 27: At home, the ophthalmologist told me it was one of the worst eye infections he had ever seen. He put me on steroid drops and antibiotics. I couldn't even see at this point. He told me to stay away from family and friends in case it was contagious. I was totally housebound for a few weeks; I could listen to the TV but couldn't watch it, couldn't read, all I could do was lie there with cold compresses on my eyes, day and night. They wouldn't stop watering. In the interim he prescribed six different medications, trying to get this under control.

Mid-July: I went to an optometrist because my prescription for my contact lenses was no longer the correct power. This infection, or whatever it was, had misshapen my cornea! I had to get new contacts so I could go about my daily activities; I am a computer analyst, constantly looking at tiny print, and I couldn't do my job. The last doctor I saw said this also left my eyes extremely dry. I have to use a very expensive lubricant twice a day and before I go to sleep at night. I am still trying to find the right contact lenses and prescriptions.

Four days ago: I was watching the local news on TV and it showed a kid in Singapore who had to have a cornea transplant allegedly due to Bausch & Lomb's Renu with MoistureLoc and it showed other people who had been effected by the solution. I felt they were talking about me. I was so shocked. All the doctors I had seen were beating their brains out trying to figure it out. Now it all made sense. I had taken a bottle of Renu on vacation with me. Thank god I forgot it at the lake.

I have $100 deductible for each of my hospital visits and I have to co-pay $30 for each visit to the doctor. And why are those teeny-weeny eye drop bottles, with about ½ ounce in them, at least $80? Ironically some of my prescribed eye drops were made by Bausch & Lomb! So far this has been very expensive, and I'm not even done.
Why wasn't this product withdrawn sooner? Why do so many people have to suffer before it is withdrawn?

As of April 10, 2006, Bausch & Lomb "Temporarily" Suspended U.S. Shipments of ReNu with MoistureLoc. The manufacturer waited until the US Centers for Disease Control announced that 109 cases of suspected fungal keratitis had been reported.


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