Do Ordinary Eyeglasses Provide COVID19 Protection?

According to Healthday report, a Chinese study found that people wearing glasses are difficult to catch the new coronavirus infection (COVID-19).  At COVID-19, about 6% of the 276 people who were hospitalized in Sui Zhouxi Zengdo, Hubei Province, China, were routinely wearing glasses due to myopia.  On the other hand, the shortsightedness rate of the Hubei residents is much higher at about 32 percent. “If you have glasses, you will prevent yourself from touching your eyes with your hands and consequently preventing new coronavirus infections through your hands,” said Dr. Yiping Wei and co-researchers at Nanchang University’s Second Hospital. “The eyes are considered to be a possible intrusion path for the new coronavirus, but there is a possibility that they are preventing eyeglasses, including viruses in the air, reducing the risk of contact with the eye.”

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What do medical officials think about the effects of glasses? Dr. Aaron Glatt, chairman of medicine and chief epidemiologist said that many hospitals require doctors and nurses to wear goggles or face guards at the same time as masks to protect against infection.  Aaron Glatt said that if he were asked “Is that enough because you’re wearing glasses?” he would say “No.” “Glasses might provide some protection, but obviously a regular pair of glasses, the particles in the air theoretically getting into the eye could easily go around the glasses,” he said.

Some point out the possibility of increased risk of eyeglasses infection. Dr. Lisa Maragakis, senior director of infection prevention with the Johns Hopkins Health System said, “If you have glasses, there is a possibility that the risk of infection will increase by touching your eyes when you attach them, remove them, or adjust them.”

Dr. Maragakis and  Dr. Glatt botn noted “It certainly has science behind it to suggest it could be a causal effect, but it obviously needs to be studied under a more rigorous fashion or other studies need to confirm these same results.”


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