Hybrid contact lenses are an innovative yet challenging way to improve patient vision. At this year's Vision Expo West in Las Vegas, Jason Miller, OD, MBA, FAAO, of Powell, OH, offered strategies to help ODs better understand the process.
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Hybrid contact lenses
New hybrid lens options are opening up treatment possibilities for patients with unusual visual needs.
“There are some options that can make a big difference,” Dr. Miller says.
Options available to ODs include silicone hydrogel soft skirt lenses, gas permeable (GP) lenses, SynergEyes Duette progressives, and SynergEyes UltraHealth for irregular corneas.
Many of these lenses are designed to address several refractive errors at once, such as presbyopia and astigmatism, while others are made to help patients address ocular conditions like keratoconus.
These options have the potential to make patients happier in their lenses while reducing dropout, Dr. Miller says.
“These patients are going to be lifelong patients—a big referral source for your practice,” he says.
The market for hybrid contact lenses
As the contact lens market grows, ODs can expect to see more patients coming in with complex visual needs.
“There is a big market for this underserved, undertreated optometric specialty,” Dr. Miller says.
Hybrid contact lenses may be particularly beneficial for patients with specific types of visual impairments, such as:
• Corneal scarring or trauma
• Corneal transplants
• Irregular or high astigmatism
• Extreme dry eyes
• Those unhappy with vision of toric or multifocal contact lenses
“These patients don’t realize that potentially they could be wearing contact lenses,” Dr. Miller says.
Providing hybrid lens options to patients isn’t just a matter of staying at the forefront of technology, it’s about giving patients the options they need to improve visual outcomes. Lens selection is just one part of the process.
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