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I. Jalbert, G. Kalogeropoulos, S. Chang, T. Bolton; The Effects of Short-Term Wear of High Oxygen Transmissible Soft and Rigid Contact Lenses, and Eye Rubbing on the Corneal Epithelium. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2009;50(13):6359.
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To measure the effects of short-term high oxygen transmissible (Dk) soft and rigid gas permeable (RGP) contact lens wear, and eye rubbing on basal epithelial appearance and epithelial thickness.
Ten subjects were enrolled in a randomised cross over study. The subjects left eye was used as a control. The right eye either wore a high Dk soft, high Dk parallel fitted RGP lens for 6 hours or was rubbed with a finger for 10 minutes on three separate occasions. Epithelial basal cell regularity was assessed using in vivo confocal microscopy and a photographic grading scale. Epithelial thickness was measured at the centre and a peripheral point using modified optical pachometry.
Changes in epithelial basal cell regularity were not observed following short term wear of high Dk soft, RGP or rubbing (Wilcoxon signed rank test, p=1.00, p=0.08, p=0.08, respectively). Central and peripheral epithelial thickness remained unchanged (ANOVA, p>0.34).
Short-term wear of high Dk soft and RGP lenses and eye rubbing do not cause visible alterations to basal epithelial cells, or central/peripheral epithelial thinning.
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