Working as an optometrist at a large independent, I’m lucky to have access to a wide selection of contact lenses that I can use to fit all types of eyes and treat some uncommon conditions. Quite often we are able to try some of the newest lenses in the market.
Last year I started using Coopervision’s MiSight lens to provide treatment for children I see who are developing early signs of myopia, or who were already experiencing progressive myopic changes.
New to market for myopia
Practising in the suburbs to the south of Glasgow means that I see a high volume of children during the week. Hearing the inevitable question from parents of “will my child’s eyes continue to get worse?” was always disheartening.
Fortunately, with the introduction of MiSight to the practice, I am now able to offer a number of children and parents a degree of hope that, whilst the prescription could change, it might not do so at the rapid rate it could have done otherwise.
The number of myopes is forecast to at least, on average, double over the next 25 years. Therefore, having a tool that can provide meaningful results in slowing down myopic progression has been a fantastic aid to daily contact lens practise and one that I wish had been available to me as child.
Being able to reduce the risk of myopic pathology such as glaucoma, retinal detachment and myopic maculopathy is also extremely appealing to parents.
The idea that the lens is ‘treating’ a condition is often attractive to parents who, before, might have looked at contact lenses as a luxury addition to spectacles, or felt that they were not suitable for children.
Now that we offer MiSight it means that their children are nearly free from spectacles, which can allow them to pursue hobbies where glasses may be a hindrance, as well as help their eyes in the long-term.
"The idea that the lens is 'treating' a condition is often attractive to parents who, before, might have looked at contact lenses as a luxury addition to spectacles"
The one-day modality and comfort of MiSight means that there’s a low risk of infection, which is often a barrier to parents putting their children into contact lenses. The child wearing the lens also experiences immediate comfort, which is all-important when you’re fitting something strange and new to a young person.
Dual focus technology in the lens means that clear distance vision can be maintained while focusing peripheral light rays anterior to the peripheral retina and therefore reducing the changes in axial length, causing further changes to vision.
One year on since the introduction of MiSight, I’ve had great responses both from a refractive point of view, and from patients and their parents. While the patients regularly tell me about the high levels of comfort, their parents say how surprised they were when their child (in the eight–10 age bracket) took to using them.
This lens has been a great practice-building tool as children and parents often talk about how it has positively helped them. It has also encouraged more parents to bring their children in for eye tests regardless of whether or not they think there are any visual concerns.
Could I now live without this contact lens in practice? No. The efficacy of the lens, its comfort and safety properties, and its expert design means that I can offer my patients something new and exciting in that I can correct their vision and reduce the chances of myopic pathology in later life.