Contact Lens Care & Compliance

Caring for Soft Prosthetic Contact Lenses

Contact Lens Care & Compliance

Caring for Soft Prosthetic Contact Lenses



Tinted opaque or transparent soft contact lenses, when fitted for medical conditions such as aniridia, albinism, diplopia, heterochromia, and color deficiency, can have a considerable impact on a patient’s quality of life (Figure 1). Because many of these specialty contact lenses are designed to last for up to a year, their care is highly important. Each laboratory has its own method of producing prosthetic colored contact lenses and its own recommendations for contact lens care.

Care Recommendations

I contacted the owners or consultants at the following prosthetic contact lens companies to obtain their recommendations for cleaning and disinfecting their lenses. Their recommendations on lens care are as follows.


Figure 1. An image of the Alden Optical HP-49 Walnut Prosthetic #3 lens on the eye of a 39-year-old multiple sclerosis patient with a history of optic neuritis. Before wearing the lenses, the patient had severe photophobia.

Advanced Vision Technologies Recommended: for the Cantor Prosthetic lens, Cantor Prosthetic Custom Hand Painted Lens, and Nissel Naturals, any hydrogen peroxide solution. Management recommends not to rub the lens, as it can fade or scratch the lens surface.

Adventure in Colors Recommended: AOSept (Alcon), Biotrue (Bausch + Lomb [B+L]), Clear Care (Alcon), Complete (Abbott Medical Optics [AMO]).

Contraindicated: saline containing EDTA, all available Renu multipurpose solutions (MPSs) (B+L), and all available Opti-Free MPSs (Alcon).

Alden Optical Recommended: any MPS or hydrogen peroxide.

Crystal Reflections Recommended: Clear Care, preservative-free saline for rinsing, Opti-Free Express rewetting drops (Alcon). For soft scleral contact lenses, Aquify (Alcon) is recommended.

Contraindicated: “No Rub” MPSs, Renu, Biotrue, B+L Maximum Strength Allergy Drops, Moisture Drops, and Artificial Tears (all B+L), Oxysept UltraCare (AMO), alcohol-based daily cleaners, and any preserved saline containing sorbic acid.

Custom Color Contacts Recommended: alcohol-based daily cleaners, all Opti-Free MPSs, and all Renu MPSs.

Contraindicated: hydrogen peroxide.

Medcorp International Recommended: for the Cantor Prosthetic lens, any hydrogen peroxide solution. Management states that some of the barrel (basket) cases may cause grazing on the contact lens and cautions patients to be careful while using such cases.

Surfactant cleaners are acceptable, but it is important to provide an even cleaning in the palm of the hand rather than rubbing the lens in between the fingers.

Contraindicated: all MPSs.

Orion Vision Group (formerly Marietta) Recommended: any hydrogen peroxide, with daily cleaner at least two to three times per week.

Specialty Tint Recommended: any MPS or hydrogen peroxide solution.

United Recommended: any Opti-Free MPS.

Contraindicated: hydrogen peroxide.

Please contact the companies to learn of any changes in prosthetic lens care. CLS

Dr. Gromacki is a diplomate in the American Academy of Optometry’s Section on Cornea, Contact Lenses and Refractive Technologies and practices in Chevy Chase, Md.