I have attended 2 interactive evenings sponsored by 2 different contact lens manufacturers in the last 2 months. Both companies were promoting their soft multifocal contact lens products. Each lens type appears to offer something different.

I was able to gleen some tips that I think will improve patient success in the lenses. I am feeling more optimistic about soft multifocal contact lenses. A multifocal contact lens is designed to improve the close vision and make near tasks easier while wearing contact lenses. This is important for someone experiencing presbyopic changes and finding themselves pushing the newspaper farther away or reaching for reading glasses more frequently. The challenge with the lenses has been trying to achieve good near vision without decreasing the distance vision.

The other advantage of the newer multifocal contact lenses is they are available in the silicone hydrogel (sihy) material. The sihy material allows more oxygen to reach the cornea, less protein to deposit and better daily comfort.

To add to the excitement, a new daily use multifocal has just hit the market. I think this will help include the patients who wear their lenses intermittently or who can only wear a lens once because of comfort issues.

Click here to read more about the rigid gas permeable  multifocal contact lens designs.

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