A 67-year-old woman scheduled for routine cataract surgery in November thought it was just dry eye and old age causing her discomfort, she told her surgeons. But what doctors at Solihull Hospital in the UK found to be the real cause of her discomfort was much more concerning: 27 contact lenses, stuck in the woman's right eye in a "blue mass."
As I returned back to the US after teaching my advanced course for eye surgeons on how to correct contact lens induced blinding corneal scars using new generation Lasik surgery at the world conference abroad, I received numerous queries from patients regarding this recent news.
Over nearly 30 years as a Laser refractive surgeon I have seen some patients referred to me for candidacy for vision corrective surgery including advanced Lasik, PRK, Premium Cataract surgery,Keratoconus, High Astigmatism and Lasik complication management, where a careful exam can sometimes reveal such situations of contact lens anomalies.
This news actually alerts us to what is actually not so uncommon and that is finding contact lenses in people’s eyes and sometime pieces of torn/broken contact lenses which the patient may be unaware of until they develop an infection or some symptoms which encourages them to see an eye doctor
Additionally, eye doctors need to be aware of such possibility in a patient who either is unsure of their contact lens usage and hygiene (more among young and busy teenagers) or cannot perceive the same (older population who may be compromised in their ability to care) by looking for telltale signs and evidence of excessive mucus or buildup in an eye as in this case described.
Contact lens usage (Soft, RGP, scleral contact lenses etc) especially complications from poor hygiene can predispose people to corneal infections which may be viral, bacterial or fungal. Such infections even if successfully treated can result in a blinding corneal scar for which the only treatment is a highly interventional corneal transplant surgery.
We have introduced a new Laser technique using the same Laser that performs Lasik surgery with which such corneal scars can now be cleared and patient’s vision restored back to 20/20.
Though exciting as an option, I reiterate to patients that prevention is still the best defense. I also like to encourage eye care providers to be on guard to look for poor contact lenses.
This Wednesday July 26th, 2017 at 12pm EST, following numerous requests from patients, eye surgeons and optometrists worldwide, Dr. Gulani shall be live on Facebook explaining his new innovative Laser surgery techniques and concepts for correcting contact lens complications.
Join us and hear it from Dr. Gulani in his own words.