Innovation to Move the Field Forward
By Jason J. Nichols, OD, MPH, PhD, FAAO
Innovation is the key to any professional field taking the next step forward. While not unique to the contact lens field, practitioners continue to look to manufacturers for new, innovative products that best serve their patients' needs. Whether it's new lens designs, materials, or contact lens care, I've always said that new products will be one of the steps we need to grow the contact lens market.
Over the last 10 years, we've seen a lot of events occur in the lens care arena, and it's been somewhat of a roller coaster in a way for some involved. One thing for sure is that we've learned a lot about lens care, and its vital importance in the safety of our patients. Further, we've also come full circle in a way in terms of some perceived vital elements associated with the lens care regimen. It's exciting to see two new lens care solutions come to market in 2010 and one new lens care solution, which is featured throughout this Special Edition of Contact Lens Spectrum, being introduced this year. New options will further expand our clinical abilities to provide patients with the safest and most efficacious means of caring for their lenses.
While I stated above that innovative products are necessary to move a field forward, another piece of the puzzle is crucial to ensure advancement—and that's you. When manufacturers introduce new products, I think it's important for practitioners to ask critical questions to help us understand how and why new products work. This ultimately will allow us to adopt new innovations in clinical practice, so we can continue to meet our patients' needs.