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Monitor / EYEWEAR

30-Day Lenses Approved

November 05, 2001|Shari Roan

Contact lens wearers who hate the hassle of removing and cleaning their lenses have something new to consider.

The Food and Drug Administration has approved 30-day continuous-wear contact lenses. The Night & Day lenses from CIBA Vision are the first extended-wear lenses to be approved for that length of time. Extended-wear lenses already on the market are typically approved for use for six days or less.

The new lenses are intended to be discarded after being worn for 30 days. They are made with a novel material that supplies six times more oxygen to the eye than ordinary disposable contacts. Sleeping in ordinary contacts is considered risky because the lenses greatly reduce oxygen to the eyes, which can cause the cornea to swell. In studies of the Night & Day lenses, users experienced minimal swelling--similar to that of people not wearing contacts.

The lenses are also resistant to the buildup of deposits. The manufacturer cautions, however, that not everyone will be able to wear the contacts continuously for the full 30 days.

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