Dr Katerina Kurteeva could not believe what she was seeing, after the patient in her mid-70s came in complaining of pain and blurry vision.
The ophthalmologist said her mind got to work, jumping to the possibilities of what it could be – a piece of broken contact lens, a scratch on the cornea, an infection, an eyelash, or debris from makeup. "I'd only know for sure once I did the examination," Dr Kurteeva said.
She shared a bizarre yet horrifying video in which she is pulling out contact lenses, one after another, making it a total of 23 contact lenses from a patient's eye. Dr Kurteeva posted the video on Instagram on the California Eye Associates page saying that the patient put in a new contact lens every day for 23 days, but never took the others out.
"A rare occasion when someone forgot to remove contact lenses at night and kept putting in a new one every morning," she said. "I got to deliver the contact lens bunch."
What Could It Possibly Be?
She used an anesthetic and a yellow stain to identify any scratches or foreign bodies. But there was nothing.
"I couldn't see anything on the cornea from the initial examination, so I proceeded to manually pull on the lower and upper lids to see if there was anything in the upper or lower fornix – these are the deep corners of the eye, like little pockets of the eyelid, where things occasionally get stuck."
Dr Kurteeva said she didn't see much, just a little bit of mucous which could be a natural response to irritation. Thus confused her. She then used an eyelid speculum, an instrument, that would keep both the upper and lower lid open at the same time for a longer period of time. As such, she could freely use her hands to get to the root problem. Dr Kurteeva asked the patient to look down.
"I could see the edges of a couple of contacts stuck to each other," she revealed. The eye doctor pulled out the lenses but could still see more. Dr Kurteeva then asked her assistant to get her phone to record the procedure. After removing more contact lenses, she could see a huge, dark purple blob of contact lenses stuck to the patient's eye. "It almost looked like a second pupil," she shared. "I gently started using a Q-tip to peel the lenses off one by one like a deck of cards."
Dr Kurteeva said the lenses were coming out in a chain, drooping down the patient's eye lid. "There were a lot of contact lenses. I thought this could be my Guinness Book of World Record moment!" She was shocked. Dr Kurteeva shared that in her 20 years of practice, she has never seen anything like it.
The patient couldn't believe it either.