Culture

Doctors Shocked to Find 27 Contact Lenses in Woman's Eye

If you wear disposable contact lenses, especially those that allow for “extended wear,” you might want to be sure that you are diligent about removing them regularly. Recently, a 65-year-old English woman, who was about to undergo routine cataract surgery, got some surprising news from her doctors: they found 27 contact lenses in her eye.

You might think that a clump of contact lenses is something you would notice. But the patient, who had been wearing monthly disposable contact lenses for 35 years, had no idea. The only complaint she had had was of her cataracts.

NPR has more:

[Specialist trainee ophthalmologist Rupal] Morjaria says she and her colleagues were startled to find 17 contact lenses clumped together as they were injecting anesthesia into the woman’s eye at Solihull Hospital, southeast of Birmingham. They then recovered another 10 lenses. Part of their surprise, she said, was because the patient hadn’t complained of any irritation.

“When she was seen two weeks after I removed the lenses she said her eyes felt a lot more comfortable,” Morjaria tells Optometry Today. “She thought her previous discomfort was just part of old age and dry eye.”

One potential cause for the build-up of lenses in the woman’s eye could have been a lack of eye exams over the years. Now that renewing prescriptions is simple and often allows for online ordering and shipment, actually having a doctor do a physical exam isn’t always something that people take the time to do. But this incident should be a reminder to anyone with vision issues that it is important to see your doctor.

As for the surgery that had been planned — it was postponed, in part to allow bacteria that had accumulated to clear from the area of the eye.