THE USE OF TOPICAL ANESTHETICS IN RIGID LENS FITTING

Title THE USE OF TOPICAL ANESTHETICS IN RIGID LENS FITTING
Author, Co-Author Cristina Schnider, Brenden White, Matthew Merrell
Topic
Year
1992
Day
Sunday
Program Number
2:30 pm
Room
Great Hall North
Affiliation
Abstract The question of whether an anesthetic should be used during RGP lens fitting is often hotly debated. Advocates point to the increase in efficiency due to decreased reflex tearing as a benefit, while opponents feel the lack of "reality" and possible adverse effects associated with topical anesthetics do not warrent their use. This study evaluated the influence of the use of a topical anesthetic (proparacaine 0.5%) on 20 non-rigid lens wearing subjects in a double blind study. Variables assessed included time required for lens assessment, corneal staining, and a subjective questionnaire dealing with the patients' anxieties and perceptions of rigid lens wear. The questionnaire was administered prior to fitting and at the one week and one month follow-up visits. Patients were randomized into group A or B and received either anesthetic or a saline drop which with pH adjusted to cause stinging at the fitting visit only. All lenses were dispensed without drops. Results indicate that prior to fitting both groups had similar perceptions about the RGP experience, but on follow-up visits the group that had received the anesthetic had more positive responses on the questionnaire in the areas of comfort, speed of adaptation, and perceived sensitivity than the group which did not receive the anesthetic. The time required to obtain a valid fluorescein pattern and over-refraction was reduced only slightly with anesthetic, and no significant corneal staining resulted from use of the anesthetic. The implications for the use of anesthetic in RGP fitting will be discussed. Study funded by GT Labs (lenses supplied).
Affiliation of Co-Authors
Outline