contact lens materials
Time to Reconsider Daily Disposable Lenses
BY NEIL A. PENCE, OD, FAAO
While in many countries daily disposable lenses hold a greater market share, U.S. practitioners have been less inclined to fit daily disposables. After a number of years of flat performance, only small increases in use have occurred over the past two years. In contrast, the past year has seen a flood of new daily disposable products (Table 1).
Daily disposables have been targeted toward active, busy professionals who value convenience and time savings and are willing to pay a little more for these benefits. Other patients who benefit from a clean, fresh lens every day are those who have allergies, those with solution sensitivities or those who are heavy depositors. Daily disposables are also a good choice for patients for whom lens care compliance has been or is anticipated to be a problem. Part-time lens wearers and teenagers are also great candidates for daily disposables, as all concerns about disinfection status are eliminated.
Recent Daily Disposable Lenses
Bausch & Lomb introduced the SofLens Daily Disposable this spring, replacing its previous daily disposable. SofLens Daily Disposable features a different material, is slightly thinner and utilizes aspheric optics to reduce spherical aberration. It also comes in more conventional packaging, with a wetting agent added to the solution.
CIBA Vision introduced Dailies AquaComfort Plus this summer. The solution includes a wetting agent, and two types of different density wetting agents are released from the lens during wear. The previous Dailies lens is also still available. Last year CIBA added a –1.50D cylinder power to its Dailies Toric, available at axes of 90 degrees and 180 degrees.
CooperVision launched the Proclear 1 Day, a daily disposable version of the company's omafilcon A material aimed at less dehydration. To its ClearSight 1 Day sphere, CooperVision added the ClearSight 1 Day Toric, available in two cylinder powers (–0.75D and –1.25D) in axes of 90 degrees, 180 degrees, 20 degrees and 160 degrees.
Unilens announced its C-Vue 1 Day ASV, a 55-percent-water-content lens with aspheric optics.
Vistakon introduced 1-Day Acuvue Moist this past year. It has the same 58-percent water content as the 1-Day Acuvue lens, but the material is altered to enhance wetting and combat dryness. This increased wetting ability is not a time-release type action, but rather results from an alteration of the lens characteristics. Both 1-Day products from Vistakon are the only daily disposable lenses available in two different base curves.
With the increased options in daily disposables, many patients can benefit from the comfort and convenience of a clean, fresh lens every day. Manufacturers are committed to supplying the innovative products. Now it remains for us to consider daily disposables as an option for more patients. Can you take a hint? CLS
Dr. Pence is director of the Contact Lens Research Clinic, Indiana University School of Optometry in Bloomington, Indiana.