lancet-header

Preprints with The Lancet is part of SSRN´s First Look, a place where journals identify content of interest prior to publication. Authors have opted in at submission to The Lancet family of journals to post their preprints on Preprints with The Lancet. The usual SSRN checks and a Lancet-specific check for appropriateness and transparency have been applied. Preprints available here are not Lancet publications or necessarily under review with a Lancet journal. These preprints are early stage research papers that have not been peer-reviewed. The findings should not be used for clinical or public health decision making and should not be presented to a lay audience without highlighting that they are preliminary and have not been peer-reviewed. For more information on this collaboration, see the comments published in The Lancet about the trial period, and our decision to make this a permanent offering, or visit The Lancet´s FAQ page, and for any feedback please contact preprints@lancet.com.

The Effect of Eye Protection on SARS-CoV-2 Transmission: A Systematic Review

11 Pages Posted: 19 Aug 2021

See all articles by Oyungerel Byambasuren

Oyungerel Byambasuren

Bond University - Institute for Evidence-Based Healthcare

Elaine Beller

Bond University - Institute for Evidence-Based Healthcare

Justin Clark

Bond University - Institute for Evidence-Based Healthcare

Peter Collignon

Australian National University - Medical School

Paul Glasziou

Bond University - Institute for Evidence-Based Healthcare

More...

Abstract

Background: The effect of eye protection to prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection in the real-world remains uncertain. We aimed to synthesize all available research on the potential impact of eye protection on transmission of SARS-CoV-2.

Methods: We searched PROSPERO, PubMed, Embase, The Cochrane Library for clinical trials and comparative observational studies in CENTRAL, and Europe PMC for pre-prints. We included studies that reported sufficient data to estimate the effect of any form of eye protection including face shields and variants, goggles, and glasses, on subsequent confirmed infection with SARS-CoV-2.

Findings: We screened 898 articles and included 6 reports of 5 observational studies from 4 countries (USA, India, Columbia, and United Kingdom) that tested face shields, googles and wraparound eyewear on 7567 healthcare workers. The three before-and-after and one retrospective cohort studies showed statistically significant and substantial reductions in SARS-CoV-2 infections favouring eye protection with odds ratios ranging from 0.04 to 0.6, corresponding to relative risk reductions of 96% to 40%. These reductions were not explained by changes in the community rates. However, the one case-control study reported odds ratio favouring no eye protection (OR 1.7, 95% CI 0.99, 3.0). The high heterogeneity between studies precluded any meaningful meta-analysis. None of the studies adjusted for potential confounders such as other protective behaviours, thus increasing the risk of bias, and decreasing the certainty of evidence to very low.

Interpretation: Current studies suggest that eye protection may play a role in prevention of SARS-CoV-2 infection in healthcare workers. However, robust comparative trials are needed to clearly determine effectiveness of eye protections and wearability issues in both healthcare and general populations.

Funding: None to declare.

Declaration of Interest: None to declare.

Suggested Citation

Byambasuren, Oyungerel and Beller, Elaine and Clark, Justin and Collignon, Peter and Glasziou, Paul, The Effect of Eye Protection on SARS-CoV-2 Transmission: A Systematic Review. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3899111 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3899111

Oyungerel Byambasuren (Contact Author)

Bond University - Institute for Evidence-Based Healthcare ( email )

14 University Dr
Robina, QLD 4226
Australia
61 7 5595 1855 (Phone)

Elaine Beller

Bond University - Institute for Evidence-Based Healthcare

Gold Coast, 4229
Australia

Justin Clark

Bond University - Institute for Evidence-Based Healthcare

14 University Dr
Robina, QLD 4226
Australia

Peter Collignon

Australian National University - Medical School ( email )

Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 2601
Australia

Paul Glasziou

Bond University - Institute for Evidence-Based Healthcare

Click here to go to TheLancet.com

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
246
Downloads
31
PlumX Metrics