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    5 reasons ODs don’t fit toric contact lenses

    Here’s why these reasons no longer resonate

    It’s time to dispel these preconceptions of fitting contact lenses for astigmatism and use new toric lens options as an opportunity to improve patient care.

    I see patients at a private practice that pushes the envelope daily to offer patients innovative eye care, which means annual eye exams don’t play like a broken record.

    I’m frequently refitting patients’ contact lenses not because they’re unhappy but because I practice by my Golden Rule: Treat patients how you would like to be treated. This means I’m always moving patients into the latest, best, and healthiest lenses possible.

    Related: ODs start fitting toric lenses at 0.75 D of cylinder

    Over the last 12 months, I’ve been able to give a big sigh of relief with the launch of new toric soft contact lens options, to name a few:

    • Bausch + Lomb’s Biotrue ONEday for Astigmatism

    • Johnson & Johnson Vision Care’s Acuvue 1-Day Oasys for Astigmatism

    • CooperVision’s Biofinity XR Toric

    These new launches have given my astigmatic patients a sharper and more comfortable contact lens experience than lenses past. Had I not lived by my personal practice motto, I may not have refit most of these patients who were not complaining about their current modality. Contact lens dropouts persist as a concern in our profession and with our own patients.

    Twenty-three percent of patients are still permanently discontinuing contact lens wear, with discomfort and dryness as the prevailing reasons.1 Those fit in silicone hydrogel rather than hydrogel for their lens material were less likely to drop out as well as those re-fit into another contact lens. Most importantly, treating the source of the discomfort and treating the patient’s dry eye disease will also reduce your dropouts.

    Related: Using toricity with scleral lenses

    In 2016, practices reported that contact lens revenue accounted for 32 percent of gross practice sales and that 27 percent of their contact lens fittings were for toric contact lenses.2 We traditionally expect patients with astigmatism to present more challenges than their spherical counterparts and to take a bit more time to fit.

    Let’s examine the five reasons ODs don’t fit toric contact lenses—and why those reasons are no longer valid.

    Charissa Young, OD, FAAO
    Charissa D. Young, OD, FAAO, practices at Specialty Eyecare Group in Seattle, WA. Dr. Young is interested in dry eye and specialty ...

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    Optometry Times A/V