A 21-year-old man from Florida has shared the gruesome story of losing the sight of his left eye that was attacked and eaten by a flesh-eating bug.
The victim has gone partially blind after he fell asleep without removing his contact lenses and a flesh-eating bacteria devoured his eye.
Michael Krumholz, took a 40-minute nap while wearing his daily contact lenses in December and when he woke up he was horrified to find that his left eye was red and bloody raw and that his vision was distorted.
He ignored the symptoms and carried on after removing his contacts. However, over the coming days, he began to lose sight in his eye and also experienced intense pain.
Doctors finally diagnosed him with a flesh-eating-bacterial infection called acanthamoeba keratitis (AK) which can trigger significant and permanent loss of vision.
Krumholz is now unable to see out of his left eye other than grey and black flashing colours
Doctors surmise that he may be able to retrieve 10 per cent of the vision back after a corneal transplant.
Krumholz told DailyMail.com, “I am 21 years old and have been trying to find a sports management type job in the industry, but it seems impossible to do that.”
“Nowadays it is no work, no social life, really, social media gets you through the day.”
Krumholz’s experience although tragic is also rare. It afflicts wearers of contact lenses at a rate of one to two cases per million people each year.
Everyone that wears contact lenses is prone to a small percentile of risk but the risks are higher if the user wears them at night.
Krumholz explained the pain he endured from the infection stating that; “I could not explain the pain like this in my life.”
“It’s like a constant shock, it’s a constant pain. I’m pretty proud of my pain tolerance but I have been screaming in pain.”
“The first two weeks I was diagnosed with this, there is no pain like it at all. I wish that I was exaggerating.”
Krumholz has had conjunctival flap surgery, where surgeons cut the ‘white’ out of the patient’s eye and put it over his pupil to assist it in fighting the parasite.
He has also had photodynamic therapy that aids in killing bacteria in AK infections.
He is still waiting for his eye to heal enough so that he can have a cornea transplant, however, the infection is still ongoing.
Krumholz wants to educate others that” sleeping in contact lenses is to be avoided at all costs.
“There’s a lot of people that wear contacts right now who have said, “hey I’ve just slept in my contacts, should I go to the doctor?” he said.
“I used to sleep in my contacts with no issues but I’m trying to get the word out there that there are issues with it.”
“It’s not ok now.’
“I used to sleep in them, but please don’t.”
“Anyone in school in middle school or high school who go to sleepovers and spend the night in them, there is a consequence and this is like the worst-case scenario.”