Wearing face mask may reduce endophthalmitis after intravitreal injection
The use of face masks by the doctor, ancillary staff, and patient during intravitreal injections is associated with a reduced rate of endophthalmitis compared with the standard of care, according to a presentation by Sunir J. Garg, MD, FACS at Hawaiian Eye.
Dr Garg presented data from a recent retrospective study that evaluated universal face mask use on post-injection endophthalmitis rates, a practice that has increased during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the cohort study, 505,968 intravitreal injections administered in 110,547 eyes from October 1, 2019, to July 31, 2020, were divided into a “no face mask” group (n = 294,514) if the patients or doctor did not wear a face mask during the injections and a “universal face mask” group (n = 211,454) if doctor, ancillary staff, and patient worse a mask during injections. In the “no face mask” group, there were 0.0289% cases of presumed endophthalmitis; 0.0092% cases of culture-positive endophthalmitis; and 0.001% cases of oral flora–associated endophthalmitis.
In the “universal face mask” group, there were 0.0213% cases of presumed endophthalmitis; 0.004% cases of culture-positive endophthalmitis; and 0.0005% cases of oral flora–associated endophthalmitis.
Garg SJ. What intravitreal injections have taught us about endophthalmitis. Presented at: Hawaiian Eye.
Writing committee for the Post-Injection Endophthalmitis Study Group, Patel SN, Tang PH, et al. The Influence of Universal Face Mask Use on Endophthalmitis Risk after Intravitreal Anti-Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Injections. Ophthalmol. 2021;128(11):1620-1626. doi:10.1016/j.ophtha.2021.05.010