CLEAR – Medical use of contact lenses

Deborah S. Jacobs, Karen G Carrasquillo, Paul D Cottrell, Raquel Gil-Cazorla, Fernando J Fernandez-Velazquez, Isabella Jalbert, Andrew D Pucker, Kellen Riccobono, Danielle M Robertson, Loretta Szczotka-Flynn, Lynne Speedwell, Fiona Stapleton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The medical use of contact lenses is a solution for many complex ocular conditions, including high refractive error, irregular astigmatism, primary and secondary corneal ectasia, disfiguring disease, and ocular surface disease. The development of highly oxygen permeable soft and rigid materials has extended the suitability of contact lenses for such applications. There is consistent evidence that bandage soft contact lenses, particularly silicone hydrogel lenses, improve epithelial healing and reduce pain in persistent epithelial defects, after trauma or surgery, and in corneal dystrophies. Drug delivery applications of contact lens hold promise for improving topical therapy. Modern scleral lens practice has achieved great success for both visual rehabilitation and therapeutic applications, including those requiring retention of a tear reservoir or protection from an adverse environment. This report offers a practical and relevant summary of the current evidence for the medical use of contact lenses for all eye care professionals including optometrists, ophthalmologists, opticians, and orthoptists. Topics covered include indications for use in both acute and chronic conditions, lens selection, patient selection, wear and care regimens, and recommended aftercare schedules. Prevention, presentation, and management of complications of medical use are reviewed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289–329
Number of pages41
JournalContact Lens and Anterior Eye
Issue number2
Early online date25 Mar 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2021

Bibliographical note

© 2021, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International


  • Aphakia
  • Bandage lens
  • Irregular astigmatism
  • Ocular surface disease
  • Scleral lens
  • Therapeutic contact lens


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