A UK surgeon had to remove 27 contact lenses from a woman's eye after they became lost.
The 67-year-old patient was reportedly unaware that she had lost the lenses, putting the discomfort and dryness down to getting old.
However, when specialist trainee ophthalmologist Rupal Morjaria had a look ahead of the woman's cataract surgery last November, she found a 'blueish mass' of 17 contacts.
On closer inspection, she then came across a further 10 lenses during the inspection at Solihull Hospital.
The woman had been wearing monthly disposables for the past 35 years but didn't get her eyes checked regularly.
Speaking to Optometry Today, Ms Morjaria said: "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."
As a result of the bizarre find, the woman's surgery was delayed because of concerns over a potential infection.
"Because she had harboured these contact lenses in her eye for an unknown length of time, if we had operated she would have had a lot of bacteria around her conjunctiva," Ms Morjaria added.
Despite her discomfort, the woman didn't mention anything regarding missing lenses in her pre-op assessment.
And Ms Morjaria said the woman was 'quite shocked' when she was informed of the discovery.
She said: "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."
The strange case has since been reported in the The British Medical Journal.
Part of the reason for it being made public was to make people more aware of the importance of attending regular check ups.
Ms Morjaria said: "In this day and age, when it is so easy to purchase contact lenses online, people become lax about having regular check ups."
"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."
Association of Optometrists clinical and regulatory officer Henry Leonard said cases like this are 'extremely rare'.
He added: "Patients do sometimes present with a contact lens stuck under their upper eyelid, particularly if they are new to contact lens wear, or have problems with dexterity, but finding this many lenses stuck in someone's eye is exceedingly rare."
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