By Lee Ann Hoven, OD
More than ever before, efficiency in patient care is of the utmost importance. As our practice gets up and running with new protocols and new patient concerns about health and preventative care, I increasingly recommend the use of silicone hydrogel (SiHy) 1-day contact lenses.
Previously, affordability and accessibility of SiHy 1-day contact lenses may have been a concern for some potential wearers. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, convenience and quality of life are at a new premium and there is an increased focus on both health and efficient patient care. MyDay® contact lenses have proven to be a great option for our practice and our patients. MyDay® provides patients with the convenience of a 1-day modality, a comfortable fit, a UV blocker*, and the excellent breathability of a silicone hydrogel.
In our practice, it is common knowledge that consistent lens replacement protects ocular health1-2. However, it can be challenging to know for certain if patients are compliant and are satisfied with their contact lenses once they’ve left the office. In an effort to solve for this, we send surveys that address a wide array of possible patients concerns and help us transparently assess our patients’ experience and compliance with their contact lenses. Poor compliance with replacement can lead to several complications.
For instance, at the first sign of GPC in a frequent replacement lens wearer, I provide information about—and images of—GPC to give them an idea of what could happen if they continue down their current path. In other instances, patients have complained that their contacts were uncomfortable or irritated their eyes. Upon further in-person evaluation, it was apparent that their contact lens solution was the primary reason for their discomfort, not the actual lens.
In all of these cases and more, I recommend a daily disposable such as MyDay®. Following the trial period, my experience has been that most patients are eager to continue with MyDay® because they tell me that they appreciate the comfort and vision that MyDay® contact lenses offer. And a reliable fit means less chair time3, which minimizes potential exposure to COVID-19 for both my patients and my staff.
We often do follow-up fits by telehealth now—phone calls to check in on how our patients are doing with their new contact lenses. The feedback during those follow-up calls with patients about their experience wearing MyDay® has been a game changer. Patients frequently remark to me that the lenses are comfortable and convenient, and they want to continue with them. Their acceptance of the lenses is not surprising. It has been reported that 95 percent of wearers who say that health is important are willing to pay more for lenses that ensure eye health. This makes the conversation about the benefits of a SiHy 1-day upgrade even easier to have right now.
Additionally, having home delivery options with CooperVision’s direct-to-patient shipping with as few as two boxes reduces our patients’ time in the office and increases the likelihood of proper compliance. These factors reassure patients that they are getting maximum convenience and value for their money, which is important during uncertain economic times. And 1-day contact lenses have a 94 percent compliance rate with lens replacement, the highest of any modality, so it’s a choice that I feel good about as their eye care provider.
One of the best updates to MyDay® was the introduction of MyDay® toric—which has the same optical design features as Biofinity toric, just in a 1-day lens. MyDay® toric provides the same visual stability, reliable fit, and fast rotational recovery as Biofinity® toric, all of which contribute to a better wearing experience3 for our 1-day toric patients. With more oxygen transmissibility compared to hydrogel lenses5, MyDay® toric also provides better breathability for supporting our patients’ ocular health6.
Finally, to truly make the 1-day SiHy upgrade successful for our patients, it’s important for my staff to be able have meaningful conversations with patients about their 1-day options, from the front desk staff at the time of scheduling all the way through to the end of the patient visit. I make a concerted effort to have meaningful conversations and trainings with my staff about all aspects of 1-day contact lenses and the material benefits of silicone hydrogel. Consistently educating our staff ensures that they, in turn, will be able to educate patients well about my recommendations and the benefits of SiHy 1-days. This gives both my staff and the patients they work with a sense of empowerment in making eye care decisions.
While the benefits of MyDay® contact lenses are many, it is the consistent positive patient experience with comfort, vision and stability7-8 that makes the biggest difference in improving our patients’ wearing experience, and therefore their quality of life. In our office, this is what matters most and why MyDay® has had such a significant impact here.
1. Versus reusable soft CLs (2-week or monthly replacement). REF: Chalmers RL, Hickson-Curran SB, et all. Rates of adverse events with hydrogel and silicone hydrogel daily disposable lenses in a large postmarket surveillance registry: the TEMPO registry. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 2015; 56: 654-663.
2. When used and worn compliantly.
3. Orsborn G, Dumbleton K. Eye Care Professionals’ Perceptions of the Benefits of Daily Disposable Silicone Hydrogel Contact Lenses, Contact Lens and Anterior Eye; 42 (2019) 4:373-379. CVI data on file 2018. Survey results of ECPs in US, UK and Japan, n=300.
4. n=564; December 2015 contact lens wearer survey. Data on file.
5. High oxygen transmissibility promotes clear, white eye.
6. Daily disposable lenses are the healthiest way to wear soft Contact Lenses; SiHy oxygen delivery to minimize or eliminate hypoxia related complications during daily wear.
7. Results based on 144 participating eye care professionals in a multi-national online survey. 2016
8. CVI Data on file 2015. Randomized, bilateral, cross-over 1-week dispensing study of MyDay® toric lenses. N= 44 habitual soft lens wearers at 2 sites (1 in North America, and 1 in Canada). At dispensing visit, MyDay® toric had better visual stability (p=0.01). Vision Stability is 86 out of 100
*Warning: UV-absorbing contact lenses are not substitutes for protective UV-absorbing eyewear, such as UV-absorbing goggles or sunglasses, because they do not completely cover the eye and surrounding area. Patients should continue to use UV-absorbing eyewear as directed.
Lee Ann Hoven, OD, is a partner with Advanced EyeCare in Durango, Colorado. Contact her here.