MD Now Urgent Care Releases Numbers of Pink Eye Cases Treated in South Florida
MD Now Medical Centers, a leading provider of urgent care services in Florida today released its 2013 treatment numbers for pink eye cases. With these numbers, MD Now hopes to help South Floridians understand how prevalent the condition is in both children and adults. Of the more than 180,000 patients seen annually, MD Now treated approximately 2,400 patients last year for conjunctivitis, a condition also more commonly known as “pink eye.”
One out of every eight or nine children will come down with a case of pink eye each year and according to a 2012 Chicago Tribune article, five million conjunctivitis cases are reported annually nationwide. “Our numbers of pink eye cases are a good representation of the numbers of the total number of cases in the area,” said Peter Lamelas, M.D., CEO of MD Now. “With more than 14 urgent care centers treating patients in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties, we have our finger on the pulse of contagious conditions like pink eye.”
Internet searches for conjunctivitis and pink eye took a big leap after NBC Sportscaster Bob Costas appeared on camera with a puffy, red and partially closed eye a few days after the 2014 Winter Olympics began in Sochi. When the condition spread to both eyes, Costas step aside to let broadcast colleague Matt Lauer take the reigns. “As a highly contagious condition, it’s important to seek a medical evaluation early to ensure it’s not something much more serious,” explained Lamelas.
While pain is a common symptom of pink eye, physicians look for other signs like:
- Burning, itchy or a gritty feeling in the eye
- Thick, milky-white discharge from the eye
- Eyes that are difficult to open due to the “gooey” discharge that results in a crusted layer around the eyes
- Swelling of eye
- Pink or redness in the whites of the eyes
Preventing the spread of pink eye to family members and school or work mates is important. MD Now physicians suggest that those with conjunctivitis wash hands frequently or use an alcohol sanitizer, discontinue touching the affected eye to prevent spreading pink eye to others, remove and discard disposable contact lenses and discard make-up during the infection.