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Soflens Multifocal

By John Dick ABO, FNAO

Soflens Multifocal contacts by Bausch and Lomb are designed to provide better comfort, better optics and better ocular health than traditional planned replacement bifocal contacts. Better comfort results from the utilization of hydrogel polymer technology that absorbs water and maintains the corneal tear films natural equilibrium. Better optics is the result of a design process of Natra-Sight Optics technology allowing the patient to easily focus at any focal length whether it’s near, intermediate or distance vision. Good ocular health is easily maintained through polymers that provide the eye with much needed moisture retains moisture and provides oxygen.

Presbyopia is a common refractive error affecting patients at around age 40. This condition results as a hardening of the suspensory ligaments holding the crystalline lens in place begins to harden. One third the refractive ability of the eye resides with the transparent medium of the cornea. The remaining two thirds is provided by the flexing of the crystalline lens held in place by the zonules of Zinn.

As a patient views objects at different focal lengths, the crystalline lens with flex to allow the eyes to adjust to see objects clearly.  Beginning at age 40, this ability to flex diminishes until the need for additional prescriptive power is required to correct the error. The flexing of the lens is known as accommodation or the accommodative reflex. Prescribing reading glasses, bifocal spectacle lenses, monovision contacts or bifocal contacts are all modalities used to address this problem.

Soflens Multifocals are designed using the Natra-Sight Optics technology by Baush and Lomb. Natra-Sight Optics uses concentric zones with differing powers to correct for different focal lengths. The primary distance correction is assigned to the dominant eye while the secondary correction used to address presbyopia is used in conjunction with the non-dominant eye. Using the process of binocularity, the process of the eyes working in tandem to produce a three dimensional image, vision at all focal lengths is corrected.

Soflens Multifocal lenses are manufactured using the hydrogel polymer, Polymacon comprised of nearly 40% water. These lenses also provide nearly six times the amount of oxygen of conventional planned replacement lenses. This is paramount to maintaining good ocular health through preserving the integrity of the corneal tear film, a protective layer of tears covering the cornea. If this layer is disrupted through complications associated with dry eye syndrome, bacterial infection or allergens, it will make contact lens wear uncomfortable for the patient as well as compromise visual acuity.

The availability of the cornea to receive oxygen is another major concern for eyecare professionals when assessing the interaction of contacts with the eye. If the eye is deprived of oxygen it will attempt to correct the problem by growing new blood vessels to the affected area. This process is known as corneal neovascularization and may result in a loss of visual acuity if the new ingrowth of blood vessels interfere with the visual axis; the pathway light uses during the process of vision. Soflens Multifocal lenses allow more oxygen to reach the cornea resulting in a comfortable, healthier lens.


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