In addition, eight people have reported vision loss and there have been four reports of eyes being removed after the drops were used.
A total of 68 people in 16 states have been identified as having infections of a rare strain of drug-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa never before reported in the United States before this outbreak, according to the CDC.
The outbreak is associated with multiple types of infections, including eye infections.
The investigation to date has identified artificial tears as a common exposure for many patients.
The CDC and FDA are both advising clinicians and patients stop using two brands of eye drops -- EzriCare or Delsam Pharma’s Artificial Tears products -- pending additional guidance.
Patients who have used EzriCare or Delsam Pharma’s artificial tears and who have signs or symptoms of an eye infection should seek medical care immediately. At this time, there is no recommendation for testing of patients who have used this product and who are not experiencing any signs or symptoms of infection.
Eye infection symptoms may include:
- Yellow, green, or clear discharge from the eye
- Eye pain or discomfort
- Redness of the eye or eyelid
- Feeling of something in your eye (foreign body sensation)
- Increased sensitivity to light
- Blurry vision
The 16 states where cases have been identified are:
- New York
- New Jersey
- North Carolina
- New Mexico
- South Dakota
To read the CDC advisory, click here.
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