National survey of corneal abrasion treatment
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PURPOSE: To survey the different methods used in the management of corneal abrasions (including iatrongenic cases) nationally. METHOD: A questionnaire survey of all 162 ophthalmic units in the UK was carried out in 1997. RESULTS: The response rate was 134 of 162 (83%). The majority of units do not have an established policy for the treatment of corneal abrasions. Topical antibiotic alone and antibiotic together with a cycloplegic are the commonest immediate treatments, whilst the most common treatment course is topical antibiotic. Padding and patient follow-up is practised some of the time by most units and all of the time by the remaining minority. Use of a soft bandage contact lens is uncommon. There is no statistically significant difference (p > 0.05) between the policy-holders and non-policy-holders in their use of the various topical regimes, padding and soft bandage contact lens. CONCLUSION: The traditional trio of topical antibiotic, cycloplegic and padding is still the mainstay of corneal abrasion treatment amongst units nation-wide. However, there is a lack of reproducible scientific evidence to support this treatment. Larger randomised trials looking at the efficacy of the different treatment options are needed.
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