Doctors in England who were preparing a patient for cataract surgery removed 27 contact lenses that had been stuck in the patient’s eye.
The patient, a 67-year-old woman from Birmingham, England had been wearing monthly disposable contacts for 35 years, and did not report of any previous irritation from the lenses.
“She was quite shocked. When she was seen two weeks after I removed the lenses she said her eyes felt a lot more comfortable. She thought her previous discomfort was just part of old age and dry eye,” Rupal Morjaria, a specialist trainee ophthalmologist at the Solihull Hospital in Birmingham, told Optometry Today.
Optometry Today reports that doctors originally removed 17 lenses from the woman’s eye, and later found 10 more lenses upon further examination.
The lenses were clumped together in a “bluish mass” and “bound together by mucus,” according to the Washington Post.
According to Time, the patient had “deep set eyes” which may explain how she was able to deal with the irritation of the large mass of lenses. Doctors suspect that the lenses went unnoticed for so long because the patient did not attend regular optometrist appointments.
“In this day and age, when it is so easy to purchase contact lenses online, people become lax about having regular check ups,” Morjaria said. “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.”