A 67-year-old woman was found with 27 contact lenses stuck in one eye while surgeons were preparing her for a cataract surgery, British media reported.
The lenses, which were found by a group of surgeons including trainee ophthalmologist Rupal Morjaria, were described as a "bluish mass" in her eye. They were causing her discomfort, but the woman had thought it was caused by dry eye and old age, reported the Telegraph.
Initially, the eye specialists found a mass of 17 lenses stuck together by mucus. Another 10 contact lenses were found after the woman's eye was examined under a microscope, according to the British Medical Journal, which published details about the November 2016 case earlier this month.
"None of us have ever seen this before," said Ms Morjaria, from Solihull Hospital near Birmingham
She told Optometry Today: "It was such a large mass... 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."
The patient had been wearing monthly disposable contact lenses for 35 years, but did not go for regular appointments. She said she was unaware that the lenses were missing.
After the finding, her cataract operation was postponed.
Said Ms Morjaria about the patient: "When she was seen two weeks after I removed the lenses she said her eyes felt a lot more comfortable."
The case could have been caused by the patient's poorer vision on the right eye and her deep-set eyes, said the medical journal in its report.
This highlights the importance of selecting appropriate patients for the use of contact lenses and monitoring contact lens wearers, it added.