Long-term contact lens wear of children and teens

Academic Article


  • OBJECTIVE:: To compare current symptoms, compliance, ocular health, and previous adverse events between current successful long-term contact lens wearers fit as children or as teenagers. METHODS:: People who had successfully worn soft contact lenses for at least 10 years completed an online survey about demographics, current wearing status, compliance, symptoms, and previous adverse events. A subset reported for a slit-lamp examination, autorefraction, autokeratometry, and specular microscopy. Statistical comparisons were made between those fit as children (12 years or younger) and those fit as teenagers (13 years or older). RESULTS:: Of the 175 subjects completing the online survey, 86 (49.2%) were fit as children and 89 (50.8%) fit as teenagers. Those fit as children wore their contact lenses for an average of 14.8 ± 3.4 hours per day, compared with 14.7 ± 3.6 hours per day for those fit as teenagers (P=0.74). Eighteen (20.9%) fit as children and 17 (19.1%) fit as teenagers reported ever having had a painful, red eye that required a doctor visit (P=0.76). Overall, there were no differences in ocular health between the groups. Those fit as children were more myopic than those fit as teenagers (-4.30 ± 1.69 and -2.87 ± 2.75, respectively; P=0.02). CONCLUSIONS:: Successful contact lens wearers fit as children are no more likely to report previous contact lens-related adverse events, problems with compliance, decreased wearing time, or worse ocular health than those fit as teenagers, so practitioners should not use age as a primary determinant in fitting children in contact lenses. © 2013 Contact Lens Association of Ophthalmologists.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Walline JJ; Lorenz KO; Nichols JJ
  • Start Page

  • 283
  • End Page

  • 289
  • Volume

  • 39
  • Issue

  • 4