Scots dad blinded after swimming in sea with contact lenses in

A DAD was blinded on a Spanish holiday after swimming with his contact lenses.

Muir Fulton, 45, from Doonfoot, Ayr, needed a cornea transplant after both eyes became infected.

He cut short his holiday and flew home after seeking help from an eye surgeon at Ayr Hospital.

Hide Ad

Muir went for a morning swim, forgetting he had his contact lenses in and an infection spread behind the lens.

Stock photo. Picture: Getty
Hide Ad

Within hours it had begun to damage his eyes. By the next day he was struggling to see.

Muir, of Doonfoot, Ayr, went to a Spanish hospital but felt he was “getting nowhere” and, desperate, called the eye department at Ayr Hospital and spoke to eye surgeon, Mr Sathish Srinivasan.

Hide Ad

“He told me to cut my holiday short and fly home immediately.

“I was struggling to see and knew I was going blind.”

Hide Ad

Muir’s eyes were so badly infected that the thin membrane covering the eyeball, the cornea, was scarred by infection and blocked images passing through to the eye.

Property developer Muir’s left eye became so infected it was in danger of bursting open, he says.

Hide Ad

He was admitted urgently to Ayr Hospital where he was given antibiotic eye drops every 30 minutes around the clock for four days.

“I was warned that if the drops did not work, my left eye would be glued shut,” Muir added.

Hide Ad

“Mr Srinivasan’s treatment saved it but I was still blind. My family had to take me everywhere. “

Consultant ophthalmologist Mr Srinivasan said only a cornea transplant in his right eye offered hope and the chance of success was limited.

Hide Ad

Mr Srinivasan said: “We got a donor cornea from the national eye bank and I am delighted to say it has worked, against considerable odds.

“Many people don’t know never to swim or indeed take a shower with contact lenses. It’s also easy to forget you are wearing them.”

Hide Ad

Muir could see as soon as the bandages came off.

“It was amazing. My sight had been saved,” he said.

Hide Ad

He is approaching the end of his 18-month treatment.

Last week he was told that he will even be able to drive in a couple of weeks.

Hide Ad

His wife Eileen said: “I feared that Muir would be permanently blind and was on the point of calling the RNIB to assess our home and help us make it blind friendly.

“We are hugely grateful for everything that has been done.”

Hide Ad

A spokeswoman for NHS Blood and Transplant said: “Corneas can be donated after death, no matter how old the person.”