Hybrid lenses: The best of both worlds?

Drop out from contact lens wear continues to be a problem so everything that helps patients stay in lenses is worth consideration. Chris Bennett asks if hybrid contact lenses can help by offering the advantages of both hard and soft lenses

Hard and soft contact lenses have always had their own advocates. Hard lenses bring the visual acuity that astigmats and presbyopes struggle to get from some soft lenses while soft lenses bring the comfort levels RGP wearers dream of. Hybrid lenses bring both these elements together.

The hybrid contact lens is not new. The first versions of a lens with an RGP centre supported by a soft outer appeared in the 1980s but were dogged by bonding issues between the hard centre and the hydrogel skirt they were also considered difficult to fit. More recent innovations in technology and materials have meant that since the mid-noughties more robust lenses and repeatable results from hybrids have been a reality.

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