Removal of Dislocated Contact Lens


Removal of Dislocated Contact Lens


The patient may know that the lens has dislocated into one of the recesses of the conjunctiva and complains only of the loss of refractory correction, or he may have lost track of the lens completely, in which case the eye is a logical place to look first. Pain and blepharospasm suggest a corneal abrasion, perhaps resulting from attempts to remove an absent lens that was thought to be still in place.

What To Do:

image If pain and blepharospasm are a problem, topically anesthetize the eye.

image Pull back the eyelids as if looking for conjunctival foreign bodies, invert the upper lid, and, if necessary, instill fluorescein dye (a last resort with soft lenses, which absorb the dye tenaciously).

image If the lens is loose, slide it over the cornea, and let the patient remove it in the usual manner. Irrigation may loosen a dry, stuck lens.

image For a more adherent hard lens, use a commercially available suction cup lens remover. Soft lenses may be pinched between the fingers, or a commercially available rubber pincer can be used (Figure 23-1). Another option is to take a Morgan irrigation lens attached to a 5-mL syringe filled with 2 mL of normal saline. Flush the Morgan lens with the saline, place the lens over the contact, aspirate on the syringe to produce suction, and remove the Morgan lens and the contact lens together from the conjunctival sac (Figure 23-2).


Figure 23-1 A, Rubber suction cup used for extracting hard lenses. B, Rubber pincer used for extracting soft lenses.


Figure 23-2 Morgan lens attached to a 5-mL syringe.

image Put the lens in a proper container with sterile saline.

image Complete the eye examination, including best-corrected visual acuity assessment and bright-light and fluorescein examination. Treat any corneal abrasion as explained in Chapter 16.

image Instruct the patient to refrain from wearing the lens until all symptoms have abated for 24 hours and to see his ophthalmologist if there are any problems.

What Not To Do:

image Do not give up on locating a missing lens too easily. Lost lenses have been excavated from under scar tissue in the conjunctival recesses years after they were first dislocated.

image Do not omit examination with fluorescein stain for fear of ruining a soft contact lens. The dye may take a long time to elute out, but it is most important to find the dislocated lens.

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Aug 11, 2016 | Posted by in EMERGENCY MEDICINE | Comments Off on Removal of Dislocated Contact Lens
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