Surgeons in the U.K. discovered a "bluish mass" of 17 contact lenses in a woman's eye, according to a new medial journal report. They then found 10 more lenses in the same eye, totaling 27 in all.
The 67-year-old patient hadn't complained of any symptoms ahead of her cataract surgery at Solihull Hospital near Birmingham. She later said she thought her discomfort was from dry eye and old age.
Doctors previously thought an eye could not retain dozens of contact lenses without showing symptoms, according to Optometry Today. That's why they sought to publish the findings, found in The BMJ, to illustrate the importance of regular optometry checkups, especially for those who buy contact lenses online.
An occasional lens stuck under an eyelid is not unheard of, but "finding this many lenses stuck in someone’s eye is exceedingly rare,” said Henry Leonard, an officer with London's Association of Optometrists, in OT.
Doctors postponed the woman's procedure, a normal cataract surgery, after the discovery last November.
The woman was "quite shocked," specialist trainee ophthalmologist Rupal Morjaria told OT, adding that the woman said her eyes felt much more comfortable two weeks after the glob of lenses was removed.
The woman had reportedly put off regular optometrist appointments, despite having worn monthly disposable contact lenses for 35 years. That's not uncommon, Morjaria said, but, given this woman's case, it clearly should be.
“In this day and age, when it is so easy to purchase contact lenses online, people become lax about having regular check ups,” she said in OT.
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