May 23, 2024

New Treatment Shows Promising Results for Contact Lens Infection

A new study published in Ophthalmology suggests that a combination of polihexanide (PHMB) and propamidine could be a safe and effective treatment for Acanthamoeba keratitis (AK), a rare eye infection that can potentially lead to vision loss. The research, conducted by John K.G. Dart and colleagues from Moorfields Eye Hospital in London, compared the efficacy of topical PHMB 0.02 percent + propamidine 0.1 percent with PHMB 0.08 percent (placebo) for AK treatment. The study involved 127 patients.

The results showed that both treatment groups had a high medical cure rate within 12 months. The adjusted medical cure rate for the topical PHMB 0.02 percent + propamidine group was 86.6 percent, while the rate for the PHMB 0.08 percent group was 86.7 percent. These findings met the noninferiority requirement for the PHMB 0.08 percent group, indicating its effectiveness in treating AK. Secondary outcomes, such as visual acuity and treatment failure rate, were similar in both groups, with a median best-corrected visual acuity of 20/20 and an overall treatment failure rate of 13.4 percent.

One of the significant advantages of this treatment is that it had a low rate of serious adverse events. No serious drug-related adverse events were reported.

“With our new robust findings using polihexanide 0.08 percent, we hope to revolutionize the treatment of Acanthamoeba keratitis. This treatment has the potential to improve access and consistency of care, addressing the unmet needs of patients,” commented John K.G. Dart.

It is important to note that the trial was sponsored and funded by SIFI S.p.A., a pharmaceutical company. Some authors of the study have disclosed ties to pharmaceutical companies, including SIFI S.p.A.

Acanthamoeba keratitis is a challenging condition to treat, and current treatment options have limitations. This infection primarily affects contact lens users, especially those who do not practice proper lens hygiene. If left untreated, it can lead to corneal scarring and irreversible vision loss. Eye care professionals have been in search of more effective and accessible treatments for AK, and the findings of this study provide a promising solution.

The use of PHMB in combination with propamidine offers a potential alternative treatment option for AK. PHMB is a popular antiseptic agent known for its effectiveness against a wide range of microorganisms. Propamidine, on the other hand, is an antiprotozoal agent that targets the Acanthamoeba organisms specifically. This combination therapy aims to eradicate the infection while minimizing the risk of drug-resistant strains.

Moving forward, further research and clinical trials will be necessary to validate these findings and determine the optimal dosage and treatment duration. If proven successful in larger studies, the PHMB and propamidine treatment could significantly improve the outcomes and quality of life for individuals affected by Acanthamoeba keratitis.

1. Source: Coherent Market Insights, Public sources, Desk research
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