!@#$%^&* doctor won't let me change contact lens brand

Discussion in 'Contact Lenses' started by Kiriakos Georgiou, Jun 4, 2004.

  1. I recently had a contact lens exam, and the doctor choose to give me
    Focus Night & Day lenses. I tried to buy similar spec lenses (Acuvue
    advanced) and the on-line store just emailed me this:

    We are writing in regards to a recent order you have placed with us.

    Your doctor's office has unfortunately informed us that your
    is not valid for the lenses you have ordered. Your doctor says you are
    prescribed to wear Focus Night & Day. Please
    confirm if you would like us to send your lenses in the product
    by your eye doctor. Any adjustments to the costs will be made unless
    otherwise requested.

    Please respond to this email and indicate how you wish us to proceed.
    we do not receive your instructions within one week, we will
    be required to cancel your order and refund your credit card.
    Kiriakos Georgiou, Jun 4, 2004
    1. Advertisements

  2. Not only is it legit, but it's a requirement of the law (in the U.S.,
    anyway). I'm gratified to see that the mail-order places are doing
    what they are supposed to.

    Lothar of the Hill People, Jun 4, 2004
    1. Advertisements

  3. Why do you want to switch brand?

    It can be done, but you will require refitting and
    follow-up from a trained professional. CL prescriptions
    are brand-specific, no "generics".

    Contact lenses are _NOT_ fungible commodities. They are
    individually fitted items with unpredictable compatibility.
    They all are made of different plastics and have different
    thickness profiles.

    One brand can be great (good correction, fit well,
    comfortable and minimal deposits) while another with
    _EXACTLY_ the same power, BC & Dia spec can be horrible.

    -- Robert
    Robert Redelmeier, Jun 4, 2004
  4. Kiriakos Georgiou

    Dr. Leukoma Guest

    OK, let's say that you have a cough and a low grade fever and your doctor
    prescribes a common antibiotic such as erythromycin. After 7 days you
    haven't improved, and so you call your pharmacist and ask for a different
    antibiotic. You are still alive, no better, but no worse, either.


    (Kiriakos Georgiou) wrote in
    Dr. Leukoma, Jun 5, 2004
  5. Kiriakos Georgiou

    The Real Bev Guest

    AND, which is a bigger nuisance, individual specimens from the same
    6-pack can be excellent or rotten. So far it's running more rotten than
    excellent for one eye.
    The Real Bev, Jun 6, 2004
  6. Well, it might be the law - but I don't agree with it. The way I see
    it as long as the power, base curve and diameter are the same I should
    be able to wear whatever brand I want. The only benefit from not
    being able to do so is $$$ to doctors and manufacturers. I got upset
    enough by this to research it - I had the opportunity to buy whatever
    brand I wanted from overseas, but the rep convinced me that the Focus
    Night & Day that my doctor prescribed are currently the so called
    state of the art, so I forked the $98 for 12 lenses, twice as much as
    the next best. I'll see how it goes with these long term, maybe I'll
    switch next time, but no, the doc is not getting a 'refitting' fee for
    saying "yeap, looks ok to me".
    Kiriakos Georgiou, Jun 10, 2004
  7. Even if the power, base curve and diameter are the same, it does not mean it
    will fit the same. This is due to differences in the plastic composition as
    well as the fact that the curve is not just a spherical shape, and varies
    between manufacturers. When a contact is prescribed, it is done so with an
    assurance that if fits correctly. Fit needs to be rechecked periodically, as
    the fitting requirements may change over time, and the same lenses may not
    continue to have a proper fit.

    If a different lens is chosen, the doc cannot just order it sight unseen -
    they have to see it on your eye. That is the refitting fee. The "yeap, looks
    ok to me" is the required assurance that it IS correct. That is medical
    dispensing, and the law, which is there to protect people from getting
    something that may otherwise blind them.

    Sorry, I don't see how you can truly disagree with that, unless you like
    playing Russian Roulette with your vision. This is not the same as buying
    shoes on the internet.
    David Robins, MD, Jun 10, 2004
  8. So, switching from CIBA Focus Night & Day to J&J Acuvue Advance will
    blind me. Please oh please!

    .....and here is the kicker: CIBA, the FDA, and the doc are telling me
    I can safely wear the Night & Day lenses without removing them at
    night for up to 30 days, and these are the people who supposedly are
    looking out for... me!???

    Having worked at my father's RX lab since I was a little kid I made
    more lenses by age 25 than your average doc will prescribe in his
    lifetime. I have seen the reality on the front lines, at the lab and
    at the many many opticians I dealt with (in Greece). If you stick to
    the power, base curve, and diameter the doc prescribes, remove them at
    night and clean them with a compatible no-rubbing system (like
    AOSEPT,) you will be served well regardless of who made the lenses.
    The raw material lenses are made from, regardless of type, costs
    pennies and the manufacturing process is standarized and not rocket
    science. I have worn many lenses I made myself :)

    Also, it's best to avoid wearing the contacts if regular glasses will
    do (eg around the home). Neither CIBA, nor the doc or the FDA will
    tell you this, instead they will tell you that this product can be
    worn for 30 days straight, which is crazy - I have the lenses and I
    can see the deposit build-up every night when I remove them.

    Anyway, back to writing software to pay the mortgage :)

    Kiriakos Georgiou, Jun 10, 2004
  9. Possibly. A remote possibility, but complications like
    neovascularization, GPC and corneal abrasion are much more
    likely first and will reduce visual comfort and acuity.
    Yes. AFAIK, the N&D are made of a different material (silicone
    hydrogel) with much greater oxygen permiability and generally lower
    deposit attraction. Safer for long-term wear. Not perfectly safe,
    but nothing is.
    You made soft hydrogel CL's in your lab??? I've never heard of
    this in a field lab. I believe in the old days that somtimes
    opticians would grind the outside of hard (polymethylmethacrylate)
    CL's but I don't think this has been done for many years.
    AFAIK, AOSept is still rub with Miraflow. There are other
    no-rub peroxide systems.

    -- Robert
    Robert Redelmeier, Jun 10, 2004
  10. Kiriakos Georgiou

    The Real Bev Guest

    Women instinctively understand this because a size 6 in one brand is a
    size 7 in another or a size 5 in yet another. Moreover, in the same
    brand, shoes (or garments, for that matter) in a different style in the
    same nominal size will vary widely in actual dimensions. Guys,
    unfortunately, are able to order shirts by neck size and sleeve length
    and not have to worry about anything else unless their particular
    belly-shape or height is grossly different from 80% of the population.
    The Real Bev, Jun 11, 2004
  11. Kiriakos Georgiou

    Dr Judy Guest

    These lenses are approved for doctors to prescribe for patients for up to 30
    days wear. That does not that you personally can safely use them for 30
    days, but that your doctor can fit them, monitor your response, and if it
    proves safe for you personally, then prescribe them

    Dr Judy
    Dr Judy, Jun 11, 2004
  12. No, I haven't made any lenses for about 12 years now. Hydrogels are
    new, but it's just another material, I am sure they are made like all
    CLs. There is not much to it really so long you have all the
    equipment. BTW, it wasn't a field lab, it was a full blown lab
    putting out 100+ special RXs/day back in its glory days. For a small
    country like Greece that's quite a bit. When we visited the UK to buy
    surfacing equipment from Norville the lab there was putting out
    something like 5,000 special RXs - either a day or a week, I don't
    recall - it was an impressive number.

    Kiriakos Georgiou, Jun 12, 2004
  13. I don't believe this is true of hydrogels. I've never heard
    of them being custom ground, perhaps because the material
    is somewhat variable, and so much depends on exactly how it
    hydrates. It may not even be grindable! Mfrs doing production
    runs can test and reset equipment by lot. A custom lab would
    have to grind two or three test lenses for each sold.

    -- Robert
    Robert Redelmeier, Jun 12, 2004

  14. I suppose there is less of a need for 'custom' contacts since most
    contact RXs are simple enough for the optician to either have them
    stocked or a phone call away from the warehouse. So if power
    unpredictability is the only issue, it is conquered with
    mass-production. With the right test equipment to facilitate
    automation, I don't see why a small lab can't put out some impressive
    output even with unpredictable material. How you compete with the big
    brands is another question, but for some markets price can be a huge
    weapon. Not everybody can afford the prices the industry is squeezing
    out of people in USA & Europe. The big boys can sell a lens that cost
    them $3 to make for $8, but if you trully sell an equally good product
    for $3.50, you can compete.

    Kiriakos Georgiou, Jun 14, 2004
    1. Advertisements

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.