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The Growing Ortho-K and Scleral Contact Lens Market and Smart Ways to Sell Them

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Gas permeable (GP) contacts are rigid lenses that comprise about 10 percent of the contact lens market. While the market for corneal lenses is declining, the demand for scleral and ortho-k lenses is rising. According to ABB Optical Group, there was a 31.2 percent increase in dollar sales of scleral lenses and a 29.7 percent increase in dollar sales of ortho-k lenses from 2016 to 2017.

The large scleral lens stays put for irregular corneas (keratoconus). Ortho-k lenses temporarily reshape the cornea (usually overnight) to correct myopia and are popular for kids. Luckily, a patient is more likely to get a GP lens fitted by a prescribing doctor than take that Rx elsewhere.


Art Optical

Scleral: Ampleye (4-curve design), SoClear (a corneal scleral design) and Rose K2 XL (a corneal scleral design). Ortho-K: Distribute Paragon CRT lenses and manufacture custom ortho-K lenses per practitioner specification, as well as DreamLens.

(800) 253-9364 artoptical.com


X-Cel Specialty Contacts (A Walman Company)

Atlantis Scleral (including a multifocal design) Ortho-k: An authorized lab for both Paragon CRT and Euclid’s Emerald lenses. They also manufacture several ortho-k lenses designed by ECPs.

(800) 241-9312 xcelspecialtycontacts.com

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Valley Contax

Custom Stable Prime, Custom Stable Elite, Custom Stable Aurora scleral lenses.

(800) 547-8815 valleycontax.com


Bausch + Lomb Specialty Vision Products

Zenlens Ortho K: sells Boston materials in many designs and has FDA approval for Vision Shaping Treatment.

(800) 323-0000 bausch.com


ABB Optical Group

Dyna Semi-Scleral, Dyna Scleral, Infinity Scleral 14.5 to 18.2, Menicon Rose K2 XL Scleral, Paragon ICD 14.5 mini lenses, Paragon ICD 16.5 lenses, Paragon ICD Toric Scleral, Paragon ICD Flex Scleral. Ortho-K: Euclid Emerald, Paragon CRT, Paragon CRT Dual Axis Paragon CRT Diagnostic Dispensing System.

(800) 772-3911 abboptical.com

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Paragon Vision Sciences (A CooperVision Company)

Paragon CRT (orthokeratology) and ICD FlexFit (scleral).

(800) 528-8279 paragonvision.com


SynergEyes

SynergEyes VS Scleral Lens

(877) 733-2012 synergeyes.com


Smart Ways to Sell Scleral and Ortho-k Contact Lenses to Your Patients

Andrew Biondo Kirkwood Eye, St. Louis, Missouri

Scleral lenses have advantages over other modalities and check all the boxes when it comes to vision, comfort and ocular health. Sclerals are great for treating dry eye symptoms by providing better hydration than other contacts. They are becoming more cost equivalent to daily disposables too. Once I fit patients with sclerals, we typically encourage them to do yearly replacements. I use ortho-k lenses predominantly on children because they assist with vision correction and myopia control. Ortho-k lenses can help stabilize a child’s vision and prevent it from getting worse during their growing years. My youngest patient is a six-year-old right up to an 18-year-old who may be a candidate for LASIK surgery. I use a myopia calculator from Brien Holden Vision Institute to determine how a child’s myopia will progress without correction. I show it to their parents to encourage them to buy ortho-k lenses. My advice to anyone selling these types of lenses is to provide proper education. We offer brochures and printouts to increase capture rates on scleral lens fittings. Our patients then do further research online and get excited by reading testimonials. I’ve tried about 12 designs but my go-to lens is the Atlantis Scleral from X-Cel 90 percent of the time. For ortho-k, I use X-Cel’s Emerald Lens by Euclid. I find them to be the most efficient in terms of fitting.

 

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Jeffrey Sonsino The Contact Lens Center at Optique, Nashville, TN

I allow my patients to choose their strategies after an extensive conversation and education of the risks, benefits and features.  I spend around 20 minutes with new consults talking about their options. I am a problem solver. I present many options to patients including corneal GPs, hybrid lenses, and scleral lenses. If the patient chooses sclerals, then I apply my expertise to maximize their outcome.

 

Carol Gilhawley is a contributing writer for INVISION.

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When You’re Passionate About Eye Care, the Right Technology Matters

Lisa Genovese, O.D., strives to give her patients the very best. At Insight Eye Care’s multiple locations, Dr. Genovese provides optimal care for her patients using the Reichert® Phoroptor® VRx Digital Refraction System. In this second Practice Profile Video from Reichert’s “Passionate About Eye Care” series, take a closer look and see how this eye care professional achieved a better work-life balance with equipment that’s designed and engineered in the U.S.A.

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Better Vision

New Lens Tech That Has Evolved for the Way We Use Our Eyes Now

Technology on-the-go gives rise to better ways to see.

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HAVING TECH on-the-go has changed the way we use our eyes. In January, ZEISS introduced a new lens design concept to address the demands of today’s digital lifestyle. Its ZEISS SmartLife portfolio offers greater all-day comfort and is fine-tuned by age group. Maui Jim recently introduced MauiPure LT, its thinnest, lightest polarized lens. EnChroma’s low-vision lenses expand the brand beyond the color-blindness space.

ZEISS SmartLife lenses

ZEISS

ZEISS SmartLife lenses for SV and progressive wearers

(866) 596-5467, zeiss.com/lenses

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Alcon daily disposable contact lens

Alcon

Precision 1 daily disposable contact lens with SmartSurface technology

(800) 241-5999, alcon.com

Wiley X lens

Wiley X

The Captivate lens has light filtering technology.

(800) 776-7842; wileyx.com

ZEISS BioChrom lenses

ChromaClear by Morgenthal Frederics

Luxury eyewear that features ZEISS BioChrom lenses to improve a person’s mood.

(800) 899-1060, morganthalfrederics.com

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Neurolens prescription lenses

EYEBrain Medical

Neurolens prescription lenses that add a contoured prism.

(949) 339-5157, neurolenses.com

Maui Jim polarized lens

Maui Jim

MauiPure LT is its thinnest and most lightweight polarized lens to date.

(888) 666-5905, mauijim.com

CooperVision 1 Day contact lens

CooperVision

MiSight 1 Day contact lens for childhood myopia

(800) 341-2020, coopervision.com

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EnChroma Lx lens series

EnChroma

EnChroma Lx lens series provides tint density, glare reduction and enhanced color perception for low vision.

(510) 497-0048, enchroma.com

Smart Ways to Sell New Lens Technologies

Dr. Greg Luce, Murrayhill Eye Care, Beaverton, OR

When Zeiss releases a new design I know they’ve put extensive study, research and design behind it. The transition from one visual task to another is easy and gazing down at the phone screen has been the most impressive improvement. I find most patients appreciate that I’m current in the field, which makes selling lenses much easier. When I recommend a lens, it is specifically notated on the prescription. I then transfer care of that patient to the optician and ask that they go over the technology with them. I also find it helpful to ensure the patient leaves with a price quote and a brochure for the lens technology, especially if they’re not planning to purchase new lenses at this time.

Heidi Mages, Topa Topa Optometry, Ojai, CA

Most of the time I ask patients how they’re going to use their lenses and then suggest what I think will be most comfortable. We’ve been selling Maui Jim lenses for five years; about four months ago we added their new MauiPure LT lens. When patients come in, I explain the technology to them. The clarity of the lens is amazing and it feels as light as two pieces of paper. It allows air to flow through the nose pads to prevent fogging, which is great, especially if you’re active. The lens comes in any style and in all these color options like green mirror, HCL bronze, Blue Hawaii, and grey. Like any Maui Jim lens they are polarized, anti-reflective and come with a mirrored color on the front. I showed MauiPure to a patient who plays tennis and they loved the light weight.

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Better Vision

Virtual Try-On Isn’t Just for Online Retailers Anymore

Try it, you might like it.

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THERE ARE MANY companies in the Virtual Try-On space; Ditto Technologies differentiates itself with a 180 degree head turn so patients can see themselves from all angles. It sells by subscription to in-store retailers, who use its app on an iPad. Another popular company, Fitting Box, has gained all types of customers, from independent opticians, brands, buying groups and retailers to luxury players and e-retailers.

Fitting Box

Augmented reality for eyewear with a virtual mirror to allow consumers to try on glasses in real time.

(884) 834-2860, fittingbox.com

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Vari

Virtual Try On Application

(516) 570-2723, varieyewear.com

Ditto Technologies

Ditto uses a high-quality 3D rendition to encourage a natural fit.

(707) 726-6405, ditto.com

Transitions

The augmented reality try-on experience uses Facebook to allow users to see themselves in 13 lens colors.

(800) 533-2081, transitions.com

Lensabl

This Virtual try-on feature helps users find the best frames from home.

(800) 984 5367, lensabl.com

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Thema Optical

Virtual Eyewear Assistant biometric tech lets you design eyewear to fit your measurements.

(786) 803-8881, thema-optical.com

LensCrafters

The MyLook simulator takes photos in-store on a sales associate’s tablet to show side-by-side images of customers in different frames.

(877) 753-6727, lenscrafters.com

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VSP

Eyeconic, created for those in the VSP network who prefer to shop online, features 3D technology that lets consumers remotely try on eyewear.

(855) 393-2664, eyeconic.com

Smart Ways To Use VTO Optio

Dr. Daniel Bintz, Vision Source, Elk City, OK

Frame try on apps spark interest and give people an idea of what colors, shapes, and styles look good on them before they come in. They can send “What do you think?” selfies to anyone. We started using Fitting Box three years ago. It can be accessed via our website and FB page and in the office. I made a sign explaining how to start. I’m also in the process of setting up at least two more stations using our website as the portal in our waiting area. We have a full-service coffee and smoothie shop in the clinic, so we’re looking for ways to create synergy to shop while relaxing with a drink. It also plants the seed of having more than a single pair of glasses. We may have a frame but not in the color they like; we can then pull it up on Fitting Box.

Lisa Verraros, LensCrafters, Oak Brook, IL

The LensCrafters’ MyLook app launched in stores in 2011 to equip sales associates with iPads to help customers find the perfect frame. Customers can compare up to four frames. At first they say, “I can just take a selfie” but when I explain that I can show them four frames side by side they agree. After seeing the pictures, they quickly start to narrow down their options. MyLook makes it easy to share frame options with friends and family for a second opinion and we typically get an immediate response. I have customers who end up buying more than one frame after seeing how they look. We offer a 30-day refund, but MyLook has made customers more confident in their selections. It has also increased multiple frame purchases and retention.

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Better Vision

Check Out These Nutraceuticals and Supplements To Boost Ocular Heath

Most nutraceuticals are sold online or over-the-counter but more and more patients are asking for specific recommendations from their optometrist.

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RESEARCH HAS SHOWN that nutraceuticals or supplements can increase macular pigment optical density and help alleviate headaches and eye fatigue. Based on doctor feedback and increased consumer concerns around vision symptoms from device usage, EyePromise developed Screen Shield Teen, an all-natural zeaxanthin fruit-punch flavored chewable vitamin for children ages 4 and up. As with other ocular supplements, it is meant to be taken in conjunction with a daily multi-vitamin. Most nutraceuticals are sold online or over-the-counter but more and more patients are asking for specific recommendations from their optometrist.

Nordic Naturals Eye Health

ProOmega 2000 eye moisture formula.

(800) 662-2544 nordicnaturalspro.com

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Lipotriad Eye Vitamins

Lipotriad Visionary.

(888) 393-5476, lipotriadvitamins.com

Natural Ophthalmics

Total Ocular Function Spray.

(877) 220-9710, natoph.com

Bausch + Lomb

PreserVision AREDS 2 Formula minigel eye vitamins.

(800) 828-9030, bausch.com

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EyePromise

All-natural vitamin line that includes Screen Shield Pro and Screen Shield Teen.

(866) 833-2800, eyepromise.com

Smart Ways To Sell Nutraceuticals

Dr. Rishi Singh, Cole Eye Institute, Cleveland, Clinic, Cleveland, OH

Data overwhelmingly support nutraceuticals for patients with Category 3 age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and category four AMD in one eye. Patients should take vitamins to reduce their conversion to AMD because studies show they can result in a 35-40% reduction over a five-year period which is significant. It’s not hard to persuade patients to buy these because they are on sale everywhere, at stores like Costco and Walmart. We direct them to the right type of vitamin for their eyes and I usually recommend Bausch + Lomb’s Preservision Areds eye vitamin in addition to a senior multivitamin. I suggest they connect with their pharmacist to get the right components for them based on cost and availability.

Dr. Louise Sclafani, Solo Eyecare and Gallery, Chicago and Illinois College of Optometry

Studies have shown that over-the-counter nutraceuticals that contain lutein and zeaxanthin can reduce symptoms like fatigue, contrast sensitivity and glare disability. They can improve visual temporal processing and help build up macular pigments to improve memory and verbal fluency. Since we don’t sell these vitamins in the practice, we recommend patients purchase them online. I suggest they buy the EyePromise family of products. They sell vitamins for geriatrics, sports vision, dry eye and screen time. We don’t yet know the damage of all this screen time on young eyes as many kids suffer from eyestrain, headaches and sleeping problems. I recommend EyePromise’s Screen Shield Teen.

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