Q: What is "ReNu with MoistureLoc"?
A: "ReNu with MoistureLoc" is a brand of contact lens solution manufactured by Bausch & Lomb. On April 13, 2006, Bausch & Lomb announced that it was withdrawing all U.S.-manufactured ReNu with MoistureLoc products and recommended that consumers stop using ReNu with MoistureLoc immediately, because of a possible link between use of ReNu with MoistureLoc and the development of serious fungal eye infections (fusarium keratitis) which may result in blindness if left untreated.
Q: Was "ReNu with MoistureLoc" recalled?
A: No. The action taken by Bausch & Lomb was a voluntary withdrawal of ReNu with MoistureLoc from the marketplace, initiated by the manufacturer itself. Product recalls are typically announced by a government agency (i.e. the U.S. Food and Drug Administration), and may or may not be initiated voluntarily by the manufacturer.
Q: Has the FDA taken any action in connection with "ReNu with MoistureLoc"?
A: Yes. On April 21, 2006 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an updated Public Health Notification on the recent rise in reports of serious fungal eye infections in contact lens users. The FDA recommended that healthcare providers advise patients to stop using Bausch & Lomb's "ReNu with MoistureLoc" contact lens solution products immediately, and instructed consumers to stop using Bausch & Lomb "ReNu with MoistureLoc" products. (Read the FDA Announcement)
Q: What is "fusarium keratitis"?
A: Fungal (fusarium) keratitis is a severe fungal infection of the cornea. Risk factors for infection include contact with the cornea (generally with plant material), and rarely, contact lens use. Although they may vary in terms of occurrence and severity, symptoms of a fungal keratitis infection can include pain or inflammation in the eye, eye watering or tearing, blurred vision, and unusual sensitivity to light. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms and are a contact lens user, you should take your lenses out immediately and contact an eye care professional.
Q: Can "fusarium keratitis" be treated?
A: Yes. Fungal keratitis can be treated with anti-fungal medications (administered as eye drops or in pill form), and treatment should start as soon as possible after the infection is discovered. Patients who do not respond to medical treatment will usually require surgical intervention, including corneal transplantation to correct potential vision loss.
Q: Have there been any lawsuits filed in connection with "ReNu with MoistureLoc"?
A: Yes. In addition to a number of lawsuits filed by individual plaintiffs, a class action complaint was filed against Bausch & Lomb (manufacturer of "ReNu with MostureLoc") on April 17, 2006 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Also on April 17, a federal lawsuit filed against Bausch & Lomb in Miami seeks class action status (and $75,000) for seven plaintiffs, and a number of former users of "ReNu with MoistureLoc" may soon join the litigation.
If you used ReNu with MoistureLoc contact lens solution and suffered from fungal keratitis, it may not be too late to get help. You should contact an experienced product liability attorney in your area to discuss your legal rights.
Contact a qualified product liability attorney to make sure your rights are protected.