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Author: Herr RD, White GL Jr, Bernhisel K, Mamalis N, Swanson E
Journal: Am J Emerg Med 1991 May;9(3):228-31
Abstract: This study tested the hypothesis that four ocular irrigating solutions were equally irritating during copious irrigation. We conducted a prospective, double-blind study of patients with chemical exposure to the eye. Each underwent cross-over irrigation with all of the following in random order: normal saline (NS), lactated Ringer’s (LR), normal saline adjusted to pH 7.4 with sodium bicarbonate (NS + Bicarb), and Balanced Saline Solution Plus (BSS Plus, Alcon Laboratories, Fort Worth, TX). Compared with traditional NS and LR, NS + Bicarb tended to be more comfortable. BSS Plus was statistically superior (P less than .05) to NS and preferred over LR and NS + Bicarb. Three patients demanded discontinuance of NS or NS + Bicarb infusions. All solutions had comparable normalization of conjunctival pH and degree of injection. Alternate solutions including BSS Plus should be considered for use in those patients whose poor tolerance to normal saline threatens to delay or interrupt eye irrigation following a chemical injury.
MorTan Note: This study, done on patients with actual chemical burns, involved 11 patients and 12 eyes.
Thanks for the opportunity to sing the praises of the Morgan Lens! Those of us who have been in the field for a while wonder what we ever did without them! We find two general uses for the lenses. One is for contact irritation: most typically, splashes. After local anesthetic, for ease of insertion, the lenses fit comfortably on patients of all ages and provide gentle and thorough irrigation of irritant substances. We have many cases of this type. The second most common use is for patients show suffer multiple injuries due to automobile accidents, major trauma, burns, falls, etc. Not only does the lens thoroughly irrigate the eye, removing most or all of the debris that has accumulated, it more importantly frees up the nurse's hands so that she can perform other lifesaving functions. Quite frankly, eye irrigation was treated as "the bottom of the list" often because other patient's other injuries were more devastating with higher morbidity and mortality. Particularly in the burn patient, the soothing effect of the irrigation and potential to prevent infection or further injury, make it an easy to use, valuable asset for patient care.Registered Nurse (Montana)
The Morgan Lens is used in 90% of hospital emergency departments in the USA and can be inserted in less than 20 seconds. There simply is no other "hands-free" method of eye irrigation. Nothing else frees medical personnel to treat other injuries or to transport the patient while irrigation is underway. Nothing is more effective at treating ocular chemical, thermal, and actinic burns or removing non-embedded foreign bodies, even when the patient's eyes are closed tightly. Its design makes it simple and straightforward to use so minimal training is required.