Going back to the roots of soft lens fitting – and circling back to the future.
The year 2021 marks the 50th anniversary of the hydrophilic or soft contact lens. In today’s contact lens practice, it may be more accurate to use the term ‘soft contact lens selection’ (at best) rather than ‘soft contact lens fit,’ as typically a certain lens is selected, almost at random, and placed on the eye to evaluate its behaviour in-vivo. In that regard, it seems that contact lens practitioners aim more at finding suitable eyes that fit the currently available stock lenses than at fitting a lens specifically to an individual eye. It may be time to move away from base curve values in soft lens fitting. In this lecture we would like to explore ways to best evaluate ocular surface shape and corneal diameter evaluation and to look at the (non-) sense of using base curve values and central keratometry values. Eye care practitioners (ECPs) have to be aware that both base curve and diameter, are surrogate measures for sagittal height. Changes in sagittal height of a lens define better what the lens behaviour on the eye would be. Can we ‘upgrade’ soft lens fitting to the next level – and what may be ways to do so? In other words: what would the contact lens practice of the future looks like in terms of soft lens fitting?
This lecture shows how we can define the normal eye – to fit the best currently available disposable lenses that we have – or to choose out-of-standard lenses in case we are not dealing with a normal eye. This way, ECPs may gain control again over the process of soft lens fitting in their practices: soft lens fitting 2.020.