Ahead of Halloween, CDPH Warns Consumers About Risks of Decorative Contact Lenses

California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Director and State Public Health Officer Dr. Tomás Aragón this week warned consumers about the risks associated with wearing decorative contact lenses ahead of the Halloween holiday.

The sale of contact lenses without a prescription is illegal. The right to dispense, sell, or furnish contact lenses is limited exclusively to licensed physicians and surgeons, licensed optometrists, and registered dispensing opticians. Decorative lenses are intended to temporarily change the appearance of the eye, but not correct vision. CDPH notes risks associated with these lenses include infection, ulcers, decreased vision, cuts or scratches to the surface of the eye, itchiness, or redness. If left untreated, injuries can progress rapidly, and in severe cases, blindness and eye loss can occur.

Consumers who have experienced an eye injury are instructed to contact their health care provider. Consumers can report the illegal sale of decorative contact lenses without a prescription to CDPH’s Food and Drug Branch Hotline at 800-495-3232 to initiate an investigation.

Additional information is available here.