Q: Ideally, how frequent lubricant should be applied in ICU patients, who have exposed cornea to prevent keratopathy/keratitis?
Answer: Some degree of keratopathy develops in about 60% of intubated and sedated patients. Incomplete lid closure increases the risk of corneal damage very high (70% vs. 30%). Fluid imbalance and positive pressure ventilation (Ventilator eye) may make it impossible to close eyelids completely. Lubricant should be applied ideally every two hours, particularly if any sort of cornea is exposed. Overall, literature lean more towards moist chamber application than lubricant application.
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