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How Does COVID-19 Affect Your Eyes?

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COVID-19 is caused by a virus that enters your cells through an enzyme called angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2). The blood vessels, heart, lungs, digestive tract and ocular membranes all contain this enzyme. According to some experts, the virus can enter the eyes through this enzyme, producing ocular problems.

A review of research published in the Journal of Ophthalmic & Vision Research (2021) found that 11 percent of more than 8,200 individuals with COVID-19 had symptoms affecting their eyes. Burning eyes were observed by 8 of the 932 participants with eye symptoms, and ocular pain was recorded by 83.

Covid-19 Eye Symptoms

Though ocular problems are less common than cough and fever, the following ocular symptoms have been reported by some patients with various strains of COVID-19:

  • Sore eyes
  • Itchy eyes
  • Blurry vision
  • Burning eyes
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Red, bloodshot eyes
  • Pink eye (conjunctivitis)

COVID-19 and ocular symptoms were also studied by Clinical Microbiology and Infection (2021). In the study, 75 of the 108 COVID-19 patients experienced at least one eye symptom. Burning eyes were the most prevalent symptom (39 of the 75 individuals).

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, with or without COVID, contact Child & Family Eye Care in , Magnolia, and Shenandoah, to determine their underlying cause and how to treat them.

At Child & Family Eye Care, we put your family's needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 281-363-4362 or book an appointment online to see one of our The Woodlands eye doctors.

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Q&A

Does the Covid-19 vaccine cause vision problems?

Some people are hesitant to acquire a COVID-19 immunization due to concerns about side effects, including vision problems. There is currently no indication that any of the COVID-19 vaccinations on the market cause vision-related side effects.

Can Covid-19 cause eye problems in children?

A study in JAMA Ophthalmology (Aug 2020) found that nearly one-fourth of children treated for COVID-19 at a Chinese hospital had mild eye problems. Those problems included:

  • Eye pain
  • Eye rubbing
  • Eye discharge
  • Eyelid swelling
  • Conjunctivitis (pink eye)