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03 June 2011

Public Service Announcement: Before using eye drops, make sure they are actually eye drops and not super glue.[More:]

This actually just happened to a woman at the BF's office. At first her coworkers were looking for oil or something to loosen the glue. Someone convinced them to call 911 and the paramedics wheeled her out on a gurney 15 or 20 minutes later.

I hope she'll end up being ok, but have to wonder how you end up doing that. HOW?!
Oh my sweet effing FSM. I hope she's okay, but, maybe you should think about what you put in your EYES.
posted by theora55 03 June | 15:17
oh man. hope things end up well. damn
posted by Firas 03 June | 15:20
I have a normally pretty smart co-worker who put crazy glue in his one ear, thinking it was his ear drops. YIKES.

It's funny, as allergy season is in high gear up here, it occurred to me just this morning that IF someone snuck crazy glue into the dresser drawer....I'd very easily crazy glue my eyes shut! I don't read the label every morning. Mind you, I don't keep crazy glue anywhere NEAR my bedroom, so...let's hope?
posted by richat 03 June | 15:26
Huh. Now you've got me thinking about what would actually happen. I thought super glue didn't bond well on wet surfaces, so wouldn't it just flush out? Or perhaps there are chemicals in the glue that would be poisonous?

Yeah, that's a tough one. Drops are thin liquid, they come out fast. The fact that super glue is thicker would make me pause at least a little bit while trying to get it to come out.
posted by Melismata 03 June | 15:41
I once used the detergent used to clean my old GP contact lenses mistakenly thinking it was the almost identical bottle of comfort drops. That was agonising, so I can't imagine how awful it must be for this woman.
posted by Senyar 03 June | 15:46
I believe that I have told this story, but on the VERY FIRST occasion that my parents left me in the care of others, I managed to superglue my eyes shut before they made it down the driveway.

The caretakers in question: my grandpa (second-generation family doctor), grandma (master's in child development nursing from Yale) and at least five of their other eight children, ages 9-30.

In their defense, the driveway is quite long.
posted by Madamina 03 June | 15:47
This advice probably applies to hemorrhoid cream as well.
posted by Ardiril 03 June | 15:55
There's a news article from last year about a woman in Arizona that did it. It said they had to cut the glue off (possibly removing her eyelashes), but didn't say anything about what about the glue could damage your actual eyeball.

According to the Super Glue Corporation: The adhesive will attach itself to the eye protein and will disassociate from it over time, usually within several hours. Periods of weeping and double vision may be experienced until clearance is achieved.

I can see the similarities between the bottle shapes and sizes, but why keep super glue in the same area as your cataract surgery medications (like the woman in the article)?
posted by youngergirl44 03 June | 15:57
How did they fix your eyes, Madamina?
posted by youngergirl44 03 June | 15:58
I... don't know? But my eyelashes look pretty fabulous now, so it probably didn't involve a blowtorch.
posted by Madamina 03 June | 16:14
Heh, my mom did this. She was holding what she wanted to glue in her lap, and tucked the tube of superglue upright between her knees after applying drops to the surface. When she leaned forward she squeezed her knees together and the glue squirted straight up into her eye. Once the emergency room people stopped giggling, they fixed her right up. Not sure what they used to unglue her eyelids, but she didn't suffer any aftereffects.
posted by faineant 03 June | 16:24
How timely! The mister and I just got home from the hospital after his first cataract surgery (there's another one later in the month) and he has a couple different drops he's using. I have no idea if we have any Crazy Glue or where it might be.
posted by deborah 03 June | 17:44
Nowhere near as bad, but my husband started to brush his teeth with foot fungus cream once. In his defense, we were traveling and we had similar sizes of foot cream and toothpaste. No damage, but we examine all tubes with extra care now.
posted by alibee 03 June | 21:43
I chuckled at your poor mom, faineant. I'm not sure why it's funny but I guess it's just one of those fluke things that you can picture happening. I'm glad it worked out ok. (and alibee - ewww, just ewww.)
posted by nelvana 03 June | 22:48
I know someone who had tubes of superglue in her purse that looked JUST like her eyedrops, and squeezed superglue into her eye while waiting at a stoplight.

The glue didn't stick to the eye, but it did end up on her eyelid/lashes and glued the eye shut. As it hardened, it was uneven, so she also ended up with a corneal scratch from the glue that was still facing the eye. They had to cut off her eyelashes and remove the glue from her eyelids, but her eye was fine other than the scratch.

They also left her waiting for hours in the ER without explaining to her that the glue itself wouldn't damage her eye, and she got really upset before they eventually go to her :( The waiting wouldn't have been so bad if they had just told her from the start that superglue will be expelled from the eye itself without sticking, and she didn't need to panic.
posted by galadriel 04 June | 09:00
Man, I just read about this somewhere - that it happens fairly often, due to the similar-looking bottles. Where would I have read that? Hm. Reader's Digest, maybe.
posted by Wolfdog 04 June | 10:40
Over a 12 month period, 14 patients were identified as having suffered an ocular injury associated with superglue (table). Eight patients were female and six were male. The average age was 22.6 years.

That from a 1997 journal article.
posted by Wolfdog 04 June | 10:43
Freaky. Are the two bottles really that similar? I always think of eye drops in round plastic bottles and super glue in metal tubes.
posted by moonshine 04 June | 14:36
Disney to sell hybrid Muppets/Star Wars toys. || The return of the Friday Night Question,