Acanthamoeba keratitis (Ak) is a rare, vision threatening, parasitic infection seen most often in contact lens wearers. It is often characterized by pain and the late clinical appearance of a stromal ring shaped infiltrate. It is very difficult to diagnose and treat.
New findings show that, while not indicated for use with Acanthamoeba Keratitis, Impavido has shown positive results in the treatment and healing of AK.
AK is an infection of the eye that typically occurs in healthy persons and can result in permanent visual impairment or blindness. Impavido appears to create miltefosine-induced alterations to the membrane architecture of the amoeba. This infection is caused by a microscopic, free-living ameba (singlecelled living organism) called Acanthamoeba. Acanthamoeba causes Acanthamoeba keratitis when it infects the transparent outer covering of the eye called the cornea. Acanthamoeba amebas are very common in nature and can be found in bodies of water (for example, lakes and oceans), soil, and air.
If clinical suspicion exists, the involved area of cornea can be scraped with a sterile instrument (blade, spatula, needle, calcium alginate swab, or cotton tip applicator) under topical anesthesia at the slit lamp. The culture specimen can then be inoculated into a dish of E. coli plated over non-nutrient agar. Acanthamoeba trophozoites and cysts can also be identified with the help of Gram, Giemsa-Wright, hematoxylin and eosin, periodic acid-Schiff, calcoflour white, or other stains. Confocal microscopy has also been used to diagnose Acanthamoeba cysts with some success.
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