Video shows Newport Beach ophthalmologist Dr. Katerina Kurteeva removes 23 contact lenses from patient’s eye


NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. — It’s a story that will make you cringe or leave you in awe. A doctor recently removed 23 contact lenses from a woman’s eye.

We want to warn you – the video player images above may be disturbing to some.

Dr. Katerina Kurteeva is an ophthalmologist at California Eye Associates.

She said her patient came in complaining of pain and blurring. Turns out she had forgotten to delete her contacts every day.

The result? Twenty-three contact lenses lodged in his eye, specifically under his eyelid.

A photo, posted on California Eye Associates Instagram, taken immediately after the procedure shows a pile of lenses that have been removed from the patient’s eye. The video of the procedure, which was also posted on Instagram, has since gone viral – garnering 3.2 million views since it was posted on September 13.

“I had to use a very fine surgical instrument – jeweler’s pliers – to separate the contact lenses. They were basically stuck together after being under my eyelid for a month,” Kurteeva said in the caption of a post. Instagram.

Kurteeva spoke to ABC7 on the procedure.

She said her patient is doing very well now and has resumed his daily routine. She even wants to continue wearing contact lenses in the future.

How did it happen? Kurteeva said even the patient herself couldn’t understand how she could forget to remove her lenses for so many days in a row.

But the doctor explained – that when you wear contacts for many years, for example over a period of 20-30 years, your cornea becomes desensitized.

“It’s basically a protective feature because otherwise you’d be really bothered with daily contact lens wear. After all, it’s a foreign body in your eye,” she explained. “So when the cornea loses sensitivity, it’s kind of an adjustment, but at the same time you don’t feel as clearly that something is really wrong.”

She added that her patient is an elderly patient, who was going through a lot of facial changes, including loss of eye fat cushion.

“The upper eyelid pocket gets really deep. So in this case, all those contact lenses may have been hiding like a stack of pancakes very deep inside in the less sensitive part of the eye,” said she declared.

Some who have noticed the green color of contact lenses may be wondering about the color. Kurteeva had a simple explanation.

“It’s quite routine when I see someone for an eye exam, we put in a little dye called fluorescein. It’s a useful tool to identify any foreign bodies, as well as stain irregularities in the cornea to help detect any dry eye or infection,” she added. said, adding that fluorescein also has an anesthetic component, which allowed him to painlessly remove his patient’s lenses.

Kurteeva said her patient was very lucky that there was no apparent long-lasting damage.

“It doesn’t always end well. I’ve been practicing for almost 20 years and I’ve seen some cases really go south, where people develop vision-threatening infections…even like a contact lens day overnight wear,” she said.

Kurteeva said her patient’s experience should serve as a cautionary tale. She advised contact lens wearers not to sleep in their lenses, be sure to wash your hands when handling your lenses, avoid swimming in them and if they wear extended wear contacts, be sure to you to turn them off at the recommended time.

One tip she shared is to link your eye care with your dental care to make it a daily routine.

“When you grab the toothbrush, take out the contacts, then brush your teeth. In the morning, when you grab the toothbrush, put the contacts with artificial tears, then brush your teeth after. That’s very basic,” she said. .

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