Demosthenes, who was one of the greatest of the ancient Greek orators, once said, “Small opportunities are often the beginning of great enterprises.” If you believe this to be true, think about the possibility of large opportunities and their potential impact on an enterprise.

I raise this concept as we think about the opportunities we have with specialty contact lenses — the theme of this special edition of Contact Lens Spectrum. Although it is, at times, a bit cliché to talk about the “opportunities,” this issue of the journal provides substantive content that truly allows you to take advantage of them — for your patients, your practice, and our profession. As you will note, this issue covers specialty lenses from A to Z and is a comprehensive resource for you to use in building your specialty lens practices in the years to come.

There is no doubt that specialty contact lenses can have a HUGE impact on our patients’ lives — from improving visual performance in both “normal” and diseased eyes, to increasing comfort in the most severe dry eyes, to playing significant roles in ocular surface wound healing. Of course, this then creates opportunities within our practices for growth, and also the creation of a niche for your practice with massive implications in your community.

However, one of the underappreciated opportunities we have with specialty contact lenses relates to our profession’s continued role in the contact lens field. While there are several disruptive technologies that are creating waves in terms of how traditional contact lenses are both fitted and distributed, specialty contact lenses remain front and center as a reminder of why contact lenses are regulated as medical devices. Specialty contact lenses require an active fitting process with patient and practitioner interaction — something that cannot be replicated in a virtual environment. We are grateful to those in support of the specialty contact lens industry, and hope you enjoy this comprehensive special issue of Contact Lens Spectrum.