Purpose. Many soft contact lens wearers have symptoms or signs that compromise successful lens wear. This study estimated the prevalence of problems in current wearers of soft contact lenses and tested the effect of refitting patients with senofilcon A silicone hydrogel lenses (ACUVUE Oasys).
Methods. Prevalence was estimated from 1,092 current lens wearers for frequent or constant discomfort or dryness, at least 2 hours of uncomfortable wear, at least grade 2 limbal or bulbar hyperemia (0–4), or at least grade 3 corneal staining (0–15). In the second part of the study, 112 of the 564 wearers classified as problem patients were refitted with senofilcon A lenses and reassessed 2 weeks later.
Results. Fifty-two percent (564 of 1,092) had some qualifying criteria, with dryness reported by 23%, discomfort by 13%, and at least 2 hours of uncomfortable wear by 27%. Six percent of subjects had qualifying limbal hyperemia; 10% had bulbar hyperemia; and 12% had corneal staining. After refitting 112 problem patients, 75% had less dryness; 88% had better comfort (P<0.0001 each); and 76% had fewer uncomfortable hours of wear (P=0.004). Although the average wearing time was unchanged, comfortable wearing time increased significantly (10.4 to 11.6 hours) (P=0.004). All (35 of 35) eyes with qualifying limbal hyperemia before the refit also improved (P<0.0001), as did 80% (40 of 50) of those with bulbar hyperemia (P<0.0001) and 76% (26 of 34) of those with corneal staining (P=0.005).
Conclusions. Most soft lens wearers encounter clinically significant signs or symptoms with their current contact lenses. Refitting with new-generation silicone hydrogel lenses (senofilcon A) can alleviate some of these common problems.