Objective: To identify modifiable risk factors contributing to Acanthamoeba keratitis (AK) infection.
Methods: A case-control investigation was conducted. Case patients were soft contact lens wearers with laboratory-confirmed AK. Control were soft contact lens wearers >=12 years of age, with no history of AK. Case patients were recruited from 14 ophthalmology referral centers and a clinical laboratory. Control were matched on state of residence and type of primary eye care provider (ophthalmologist or optometrist). Participants were interviewed using a standardized questionnaire. Univariable and multivariable conditional logistic regression analyses were conducted. Matched odds ratios (mORs) were calculated.
Results: Participants included 88 case patients and 151 matched control. Case patients were more likely to be aged <25 years (unadjusted mOR 2.7, 95% confidence interval 1.3-5.5) or aged >53 years (mOR 2.5, 1.1-5.7), and more likely to be men (mOR 2.6, 1.4-4.8). Unadjusted analyses identified multiple risk factors: rinsing (mOR 6.3, 1.3-29.9) and storing lenses in tap water (mOR 3.9, 1.2-12.3), topping off solution in the lens case (mOR 4.0, 2.0-8.0), having worn lenses <=5 years (mOR 2.4, 1.3-4.4), rinsing the case with tap water before storing lenses (mOR 2.1, 1.1-4.1), and using hydrogen peroxide (mOR 3.6, 1.1-11.7) versus multipurpose solution. Significant risk factors in multivariable modeling included age >53 years, male sex, topping off, and using saline solution.
Conclusions: Numerous modifiable risk factors for AK were identified, mostly involving hygiene practices. To reduce the risk of AK, lens wearers should observe recommended lens care practices.