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An International Survey of Toric Contact Lens Prescribing

Morgan, Philip B. Ph.D.; Efron, Nathan Ph.D., D.Sc.; Woods, Craig A. Ph.D.The International Contact Lens Prescribing Survey Consortium

doi: 10.1097/ICL.0b013e318268612c

Objectives: To characterize toric contact lens prescribing worldwide.

Methods: Up to 1,000 survey forms were sent to contact lens fitters in up to 39 countries between January and March every year for 5 consecutive years (2007–2011). Practitioners were asked to record data relating to the first 10 contact lens fits or refits performed after receiving the survey form. Only data for toric and spherical soft lens fits were analyzed. Survey data collected since 1996 were also analyzed for 7 nations to assess toric lens fitting trends since that time.

Results: Data were collected in relation to 21,150 toric fits (25%) and 62,150 spherical fits (75%). Toric prescribing ranged from 6% of lenses in Russia to 48% in Portugal. Compared with spherical fittings, toric fittings can be characterized as follows: older age (29.8 ± 11.4 years vs. 27.6 ± 10.8 years for spherical lenses); men are overrepresented (38% vs. 34%); greater proportion of new fits (39% vs. 32%); use of silicone hydrogel lenses (49% vs. 39%); and lower proportion of daily disposable lenses (14% vs. 28%). There has been a continuous increase in toric lens prescribing between 1996 and 2011. The proportion of toric lens fits was positively related to the gross domestic product at purchasing power parity per capita for year 2011 (r 2 = 0.21; P=0.004).

Conclusions: At the present time, in the majority of countries surveyed, toric soft contact lens prescribing falls short of that required to correct clinically significant astigmatism (≥0.75 diopters) in all lens wearers.

Eurolens Research (P.B.M.), Faculty of Life Sciences, The University of Manchester, Manchester, United Kingdom

Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation (N.E.) and School of Optometry and Vision Science, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia

School of Medicine (Optometry) (C.A.W.), Deakin University, Waurn Ponds, Victoria, Australia.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Nathan Efron, Ph.D., D.Sc., Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, Queensland University of Technology, 60 Musk Avenue, Kelvin Grove, Queensland 4059, Australia; e-mail:

The authors have no funding or conflicts of interest to disclose.

List of the members of the International Contact Lens Prescribing Survey Consortium is given in Appendix 1.

Accepted July 5, 2012

© 2013 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.