Here Is How To Prescribe Computer Lenses For Your Presbyopes

This post is sponsored by Essilor of America, Inc.
5 min read

Computer lenses are an under utilized type of ophthalmic lens. Here is what you need to know in order to prescribe them for your presbyopes.

Here Is How To Prescribe Computer Lenses For Your Presbyopes
This is a sponsored post by Essilor of America, a supporter of NewGradOptometry & new graduate optometrists!

In my opinion, computer lenses are the most under-prescribed type of ophthalmic lens.

I speak to my patients about them on a routine basis, and a majority of patients have no idea they exist, even though they have actually been around for about 15 years. Essilor computer lenses are my lens of choice for new emmetropic presbyopes with a low ADD or for patients I think may have trouble with adaptation.
I prescribe very few single vision reading only lenses because I am routinely prescribing computer lenses.

What is a "computer lens"?
  • A lens designed with progressive viewing distances but optimized for intermediate distance.
  • Increased intermediate and near, but decreased distance area.
  • Designed to avoid patients having to tilt chin up and down throughout the day
  • May provide a solution for Visual Fatigue Syndrome (Visual Fatigue Syndrome is focusing on a target 1-3 ft away for an extended period of time)
  • Ideal for heavy use of iPads, Kindles, etc.
  • Perfect for the presbyope who complains of tired eyes, blurred vision, headaches, neck and shoulder pain

What differentiates computer lenses from progressives?
  • The intermediate channel is widened to decrease head and eye movement
  • Allows ease of use for simultaneous viewing of multiple monitors or viewing at multiple distances
  • Easier adaptation for patients due to less peripheral "swim"
  • More specialized for functional tasks vs. day to day use
  • Patients are unable to drive with computer lenses

What is the benefit of computer lenses over readers?

  • Patient has multiple viewing distances within the lenses making computer lenses more functional.
  • Allows for limited distance viewing but ideal in certain circumstances like viewing a menu and dining partner simultaneously or talking to a colleague across a conference table.
  • Adaptation is easier, decreasing swim effect when taking readers on and off.
  • Ability to view your keyboard, monitor, and paperwork simultaneously.
  • I describe over the counter readers as a "one size fits all" hat. They are a compromise and never fit perfectly!

Who is a good candidate?

The key to deciding what type of lens to prescribe involves obtaining a good case history.
Here are some questions to consider:
  1. Do they already own progressives, but express difficulty with computer use?
  2. What is the patient's occupation? What do they spend their time doing throughout the day?
  3. How is their desk arrangement set up at work? At home?
  4. Do they use a laptop? Desktop? Both? Simultaneously?
  5. Do they spend time in conferences? Meetings? View powerpoint presentations?
  6. Are they involved in sales? Spend time interacting with clients?
  7. Do they have any neck or back problems?
  8. Do they have to enter data into a computer? This indicates need for multiple distances.
  9. Do they complain about any difficulty with distance? Any difficulty with driving at night?
  10. Do they own progressives, but prefer over the counter readers for computer use?
  11. Personality-wise, any indications they may have difficulty adapting to a progressive lens?
History is key with patients. Most patients who know they need help with “reading” mean computer and reading. This is important to ask because once patients need over a +2.00 add, they will have to sit too close to their desktop monitors with single vision glasses. Essilor computer lenses are ideal at this point!
Essilor computer lenses are ideal as a second pair of “occupational lenses” to a pair of progressive lenses.

How do I prescribe Essilor computer lenses?
Prescribing Essilor computer lenses is very simple. Your lab will make the lenses according to the Rx you give them.
Supply a normal progressive script to your lab:
  • Distance Rx - B measurement must be greater than 30 in order for patients to get entire distance Rx
  • Reading ADD
  • Fitting height (Must be at least 15 mm)
  • Monocular Distance PDs
Prescribing the right type of lenses for your patients is a developed skill. As a practitioner, your patient's visual needs can best be met with selection of the right type of ophthalmic lens.
Essilor's computer lenses are the perfect solution to the many hours our patients are spending on the computer and the visual fatigue that results from it.

All Essilor Computer lenses include your choice of Premium or Value AR treatment.

Courtney Dryer, OD
About Courtney Dryer, OD

Courtney Dryer is a 2011 graduate of SCO. She opened 4 Eyes Optometry in her hometown of Charlotte, NC in February of 2013. After 5 years, the practice name was changed to Autarchic Spec Shop to renew the practice's commitment to independent optometry. In addition to consulting with new graduate optometrists on start-up practices, she contributes regularly to New Grad Optometry and has guest blogged for Invision Magazine. The unique design of her boutique practice was featured in Women in Optometry. In 2015, Vision Monday named her a Rising Star, and one of the most influential women in optical.

Courtney Dryer, OD
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