Getting our patients to be compliant with contact lens replacement schedules can be a very challenging task. While patients may have various reasons not to respect these guidelines, it very important that we continue to clearly outline the associated risks.
But what are the associated risks? As expected, studies have found a direct relationship between compliance and the presence of ocular complications1,2. Interestingly enough, research has also shown something else. Did you know that patients who abuse these schedules also have longer times between routine eye examinations?3 This information is not only important for the contact lens professional, but industry is also affected by these results. Understanding all of these factors, it is easy to see why Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, has recently decided to make a bold move.
Johnson & Johnson now requires its customers to buy 6-month packs of its ACUVUE® OASYS® Brand Contact Lenses. This adjustment is not only an attempt to address compliance with replacement schedules, but it is also inadvertently encouraging more frequent eye exams. As indicated in their recent press release, “… research showed that patients with larger pack sizes tended to be more compliant in replacing their lenses bi-weekly as recommended by their doctor, had a significantly better wearing experience with respect to better comfort throughout the day, at the end of the day, and throughout the wear cycle” 4. According to Laura Angelini, president, Johnson & Johnson Vision Care Companies, North America. “Additionally, patients with larger pack sizes said they were more likely to return to their doctor the next time they need an eye examination.” 4
Understanding patient habits is not only important for the eye care professional, but manufacturers are interested as well. Rest assured that this strategy of Johnson & Johnson will be met by other attempts to target the same issues. Fortunately, these changes will ultimately help our ‘misbehaving’ patients in the long run.
Jason E. Compton OD FAAO
- Yeung K, Forister JF, Forister EF, Chung MY, Han S, Weissman BA. Compliance with soft contact lens replacement schedules and associated contact lens-related ocular complications: the UCLA Contact Lens Study. Optometry. 2010 Nov;81(11):598-607
- Dumbleton K, Woods CA, Jones LW, Fonn D. The relationship between compliance with lens replacement and contact lens-related problems in silicone hydrogel wearers. Cont Lens Anterior Eye. 2011 Oct;34(5):216-22.
- Dumbleton K, Richter D, Bergenske P, Jones LW. Compliance with lens replacement and the interval between eye examinations. Optom Vis Sci. 2013 Apr;90(4):351-8.
- Johnson & Johnson. Vision Care. Johnson & Johnson Vision Care Introduces New Six-Month Supply Pack for Acuvue Oasys Brand Contact Lenses. Acuvue Professional. N.p., 26 June 2014. Web. 3 July 2014. <http://www.acuvueprofessional.com/six-month-supply-pack?back-filter=all&back-sort=most-recent>.