May 9, 2006
Most infected contact wearers used Bausch product
CHICAGO (Reuters) - New data from U.S. health authorities
released on Tuesday found that two-thirds of patients with a
rare and potentially blinding fungal infection used a recalled
contact lens solution made by Bausch & Lomb Inc., sending the
company's shares lower.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on
Tuesday that 66 percent of 93 fully analyzed cases of contact
lens wearers with the eye infection reported using Bausch &
Lomb's ReNu with MoistureLoc solution.
The total number of confirmed cases of the infection has
climbed to 106, up from 102 confirmed cases on Friday.
Ninety-five percent of patients with the infection wore
contact lenses. Five percent did not.
Bausch & Lomb voluntarily recalled ReNu with MoistureLoc
last month after a disproportionate number of people with the
infection used that product.
The CDC said it is still too soon to blame a particular
product for the outbreak of Fusarium keratitis, which can
result in blindness and eye loss.
Shares of Bausch & Lomb, which fell as much as 3.2 percent
to $43.25 immediately after the CDC update, were down just 7
cents to $44.61 in afternoon trading on the New York Stock
(Additional reporting by Lisa Richwine in Washington.)