UK soccer fan and newspaper journalist, Nick Humphreys, went partially blind in his right eye after showering with his contact lenses in.
The 29-year-old from Shrewsbury, Shropshire has already had to have two operations and is now waiting to have a corneal transplant.
What happened is that a parasite burrowed into his eye.
At just 4-years-old, Humphrey's started wearing glasses. Then in 2013, he decided to start wearing contacts to help improve his eyesight while playing football.
He said that if he knew how dangerous it was to wear contacts while showering, he would have never gotten them to begin with. He said “In my mid-20s I really started to throw myself into exercise and at the time I thought my glasses were a massive hindrance.”
Humphrey's went on to say “On a standard morning I’d wake up, pop my lenses in and head to the gym before work, then I’d jump in the shower before heading to the office.”
He didn't think anything of it since he was never advised to not do it, and the packaging as well as his opticians never warned him about these risks.
In January of 2018, he noticed a scratch on his right eye and started using “over-the-counter eye drops and turned all my phone and computer display settings down to the lowest brightness, which seemed to do the trick."
He eventually went to the hospital where doctors ran tests and told him it was Acanthamoeba Keratitis (AK). AK is a cornea infection that is caused by tiny organisms found in the water.
After using disinfectant eye drops for three weeks in March of 2018, he suddenly found that his right eye went completely blind.
Humphreys recalled “I was driving to work and my vision completely went in my right eye. I don’t know how I managed not to crash, but it didn’t take me long to realize I needed to get back to the hospital.” With not being able to leave the house much, he found himself depressed and had to wait for doctors to figure out a game plan.
He went on to say “The pain in my eye was too much and the only time I would leave was to visit the hospital. I felt at my absolute lowest and the one thing that would cheer me up — playing football — was no longer an option.”
He ended up having a procedure that cleared up the infection, but still remained blind. Humphreys added “Obviously, I didn’t want to be blind in my right eye, but at least, knowing the infection had gone, I could start to get my life back on track. I could finally return to work and start to hit the gym.”
Although he was thankful to start returning to his normal life, his mental health still suffered due to all the trauma he had gone through. Humphreys has slowly come to terms with his condition after being referred to a counselor.
Now, he's working with the charity Fight for Sight to help raise awareness of the risks and dangers of wearing contact lenses in the water.