“A bluish foreign body” discovered in 67-year-old woman’s eye during a routine cataract surgery turned out to 17 contact lenses bound together.
The woman, who has not been named, believed the discomfort was part of old age and dry eye.
The British Medical Journal (BMJ) reports that “a bluish foreign body” emerged during the procedure “as a hard mass of 17 contact lenses bound together by mucus”.
Doctors wrote in the journal: “The patient had worn monthly disposable lenses for 35 years.
“She had poorer vision in the right eye and deep set eyes, which might have contributed to the unusually large number of retained foreign bodies.”
Rupal Morjaria, a specialist trainee in ophthalmology, told Optometry Today: “None of us have ever seen this before.
“It was such a large mass. All the 17 contact lenses were stuck together.
“We were really surprised that the patient didn’t notice it because it would cause quite a lot of irritation while it was sitting there.
“She was quite shocked. She thought her previous discomfort was just part of old age and dry eye.”
It wasn’t clear how long the contact lenses had been in her eye.
“In this day and age, when it is so easy to purchase contact lenses online, people become lax about having regular check ups,” Ms Morjaria added.
“Contact lenses are used all the time, but if they are not appropriately monitored we see people with serious eye infections that can cause them to lose their sight,.”
It’s recommended that you wear your contact lenses for a maximum of 10-12 hours a day, and never sleep in them.
Wearing your lenses for longer may cause your eyes to become uncomfortable, red and more prone to infection.