The Eyeball Piercing Is a Thing, Could This Become a Bizarre Trend?

We’ve come a long way since the time tattoos and body piercings were frowned upon. Today, most of the general public has opened up their minds to accept and admire these body modifications as a form of self-expression. However, sometimes the sight of piercings or tattoos in a particularly sensitive part of the body can give you the creeps – like this one. Did you know that people are actually surgically implanting jewelry onto their eyeballs for that oh-so-romantic glint in the eye? Yeah, our eyes hurt just thinking about it.

A New York woman made headlines a few years ago when she went under the knife to have a heart-shaped piece of platinum jewelry surgically implanted into her eyeball. Lucy Luckayanko spent a whopping $3,000 for the procedure at the time and she has no regrets about it. The surgery was performed by New York-based eye surgeon Dr. Emil Chynn, who operated in front of a floor-to-ceiling glass window on Park Avenue in Manhattan so passersby could watch from the street. Speaking to ABC News, Chynn claimed it was an extremely simple procedure.

Apparently, Chynn used a tiny pair of scissors to make a slit in the thin membrane covering the white of his patient’s eye, and simply slipped the curved silvery heart into its pocket. The surgeon claimed that the incision made was so small that it did not even require stitches. He revealed that he’d been on the lookout for a patient to get the first SafeSight Eye Jewelry for quite a few years at that point and that Luckayanko was the perfect candidate for a number of reasons.

“She’s Russian. She’s over the top,” said he, by way of explanation. Apparently, he’d initially hoped to perform the surgery on a celebrity and live telecast it on TV, but had then decided to settle for someone attractive enough for the media to take notice. Chynn hoped broadcasting the procedure on TV would help the trend catch on and convince the public on how safe and effortless the procedure was.

He later went ahead and filmed himself performing the stomach-churning surgery on another client a few years later. His patient, Skyler, opted to have a piece of 3mm-by-4mm-wide star-shaped platinum jewelry implanted into her eye in 2018, thereby becoming one of around three people in the whole of America to undergo the unusual cosmetic enhancement. In the 5 years since Luckayanko’s surgery, the price for the procedure shot up by $2000 and Skyler gladly shelled out a staggering $5000 for her unique body modification.

According to a report by Daily Mail at the time, the surgery only took a few minutes. Chynn reportedly began the procedure by giving his patient a topical anesthetic and then sterilizing the surface of the eyeball before lining a crosshair up to the part of the eyeball where the jewelry would be placed. He then made a 3mm wide incision on the spot and slid the platinum star inside. The allegedly pain-free surgery is said to have lasted just 5 minutes and takes only 3 days to heal after the conjunctiva seals. Chynn claims the patient cannot feel the less-than 1mm thick jewel in their eye once the incision heals as it is smoothened, polished, and curved to conform to the shape of the eye.

Luckayanko and Skyler can also have the implants taken out if they ever choose to do so, in another procedure that similarly lasts around 5 minutes. “This is a purely cosmetic surgery. There are only two or three people in the whole of the United States of America that have undergone this. It is not widely sought and I’m performing less than one surgery per year, out of a population of over 325 million. Eye jewelry was developed in Holland over a decade ago and has been successfully implanted into hundreds of patients’ eyes in Europe without a single major complication or adverse event,” said Chynn.

Despite Chynn’s assurances that the procedure is completely safe, the American Academy of Ophthalmology has warned the public against getting it done. “The American Academy of Ophthalmology has not identified sufficient evidence to support the safety or therapeutic value of this procedure,” said the academy, in a statement listing potential complications of the likes of bleeding beneath the conjunctiva, blindness from ocular infection or bleeding, and perforation of the eye and conjunctivitis.

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