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Prescribing for Astigmatism
Don't Forget Daily Disposables When Fitting Astigmats
By Jason R. Miller, OD, MBA
It has been well established that a significant number of astigmatic contact lens wearers are wearing spherical equivalent contact lenses. This technique is often used to mask the uncorrected cylinder, but it often does not provide optimal vision correction. Newer daily disposable options in toric designs provide us with an opportunity to engage current astigmatic and potential wearers with this convenient modality.
Why Daily Disposables?
Daily disposable contact lenses offer many advantages, of which convenience is by far the biggest. This modality offers patients a fresh lens each time, without the hassle of cleaning and keeping track of a replacement schedule. Daily disposables may be the best choice for our pediatric and teen population, who may not be as responsible with lens care. Also, one-day contact lenses are very useful for patients who have a history of noncompliance and lens care solution or material sensitivity or toxicity. If patients are looking for part-time wear, then daily disposable lenses are probably the best choice.
But this option is not perfect for everyone. Some patients are resistant to switch to daily disposable lenses, so make sure to choose your words wisely when discussing this option.
Available Toric Options
Currently there are three one-day disposable options that may be a viable consideration for patients who have astigmatic refractive error. These include Focus Dailies Toric (Ciba Vision), ClearSight 1 Day Toric (CooperVision), and SofLens Daily Disposable Toric (Bausch + Lomb). Table 1 lists these options and their current parameters. The power availability is the primary issue with current daily disposable toric lenses as they are unfortunately available only in limited power ranges.
Another Option for Astigmats
From single-use daily disposable contact lenses to frequent and yearly replacement schedules, today's lens wearers have many options available to correct their refractive error. But ultimately, we are responsible for selecting a proper lens modality, material, and solution combination to ensure lens wear success. Consider daily disposable torics the next time you see an astigmatic corrective patient in your chair. CLS
Dr. Miller is in a partnership private practice in Powell, Ohio, and is an adjunct faculty member for The Ohio State University College of Optometry. He has received honoraria for writing, speaking, acting in an advisory capacity, or research from Alcon, Argent Media, Aton Pharma, CooperVision, and Hoya. You can reach him at email@example.com.
Contact Lens Spectrum, Issue: August 2011