A   A   A

Although not really all that new, this type of hybrid contact lens is mostly unknown by the general public. This lens modality performs differently than other contacts and so provide yet another option.

Hybrid Contact Lenses Art

A Contact Lens With A Skirt?

Hybrid contact lenses are a very special category of contact lenses. This contact lens is the physical melding of rigid lens design with a soft lens. The lens has a rigid center with a soft "skirt" surrounding this rigid center. The very first lens of this type was created a few of decades ago and considered revolutionary, but that particular design called the Saturn lens, was fraught with a multitude of problems. Next there was a version of this lens called Softperm, which was an improvement over its predecessor in many ways yet there were still some significant issues with this particular design. The rigid center did not allow oxygen through the material just like the older hard lens designs. This lens would also tighten during the day further stressing the underlying cornea. The soft skirt would dry out as well as accumulate deposits easily, so in general this would be a lens, in my opinion and practice, used only as a last resort.


Breath Of Fresh Air

Hybrid designs have now been significantly advanced in its new and modernized form. Currently called SynergEyes, it has been redesigned with some very important changes. The rigid center is made of a material that is very porous to oxygen so the cornea is able to "breathe" very well. The soft lens skirt is made of a material that both resists deposits and drying. Together, this rigid/soft lens combination is the best that has ever been available, and is so revolutionary and different than the previous incarnations in this category, that it holds five U.S. patents with many additional patents pending.


Some Of The Advantages

"The soft skirt provides the benefit of initial comfort..."

In general terms, the concept of the hybrid contact lens offers some very unique performance characteristics and benefits. The rigid center is aligned directly over the pupil so the vision through this portion of the lens is very crisp - much sharper than can be achieved with any soft lens design. This becomes especially true when dealing with astigmatism. The soft skirt provides the benefit of initial comfort because this portion of the lens ensures excellent centration, reduced movement, and virtually no awareness since it is tucked under the lids.


Seven Flavors

SynergEyes contact lenses are available in seven different designs. SynergEyes A is a contact lens designed primarilly for "normal" corneas that need refractive correction for myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism. The SynergEyes Multifocal is used for all of the same conditions as the SynergEyes A but when the patient needs the additional help of a reading prescription due to Presbyopia. SynergEyes KC is a contact lens designed for the very unique requirements of fitting Keratoconus. The SynergEyes PS is meant to be used for patients that have had refractive surgery for myopia/astigmatism and who are now suffering with poor quality vision. As a more advanced approach to dealing with Keratoconus, the SynergEyes ClearKone took another approach to addressing Keratoconus with a different fitting philosophy. The SynergEyes Duette platform elevated the different fitting philosophy of the ClearKone by improving the materials used for the lens. The SynergEyes UltraHealth now incorporates a very oxygen permeable rigid material in the middle of the lens along with a silicone hydrogel soft skirt allowing a high level of oxygen through all parts of the lens from center to edge. This is the healthiest hybrid lens that has ever existed.


Another Option?

Although the SynergEyes hybrid lens can be used very effectively for people with irregular corneas from causes such as disease, trauma, infection, or refractive surgery, this lens now can be used for the more normal cornea and in more "everyday" and "routine" scenarios. This lens, due to its very unique nature, may also be a lens that can succeed in situations where all other types of contact lenses have failed.