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Comparative study of visual performance with tinted soft contact lenses vs. clear soft contact lenses and tinted spectacles under bright outdoor conditions; Phase II

1 May 2002


Background: Research has clearly shown the advantages of performance tinted CL wear with regard to various measures of objective and subjective responses under various lighting conditions. The current study expanded upon these results.

Methods: Subjects were 38 non-presbyopic emmetropes or slight ametropes with distance Snellen acuity of 20/20 or better while wearing -0.50 D spherical Acuvue 2 CLs. Measurements of 6m tachistoscopic stereoacuity and variable distance timed and tachistoscopic texture gradient recognition were obtained with subjects wearing clear CLs, tinted spectacles, and SportSight CLs. Lens modality and test sequence were randomized.

Results: Stereoacuity results showed no statistically significant difference in stereolocalization when subjects were wearing clear CLs, SportSight CLs, or tinted spectacles. Texture gradient results using timed and tachistoscopic presentations demonstrated that it was more difficult for subjects to correctly identify the seam orientation at farther distances than nearer distances, and that subjects took more time to try to identify distant target orientation versus near target orientation. In addition, tachistoscopic presentations were not found to be significant with regard to correctness of responses at any distance with any lens modality. Subjective data indicated more physical comfort with either CL modality instead of tinted spectacles. SportSight CLs were also found to be the most visually comfortable modality, followed by tinted spectacles and then clear CLs. Furthermore, a general trend indicated that subjects felt they were able to perform best while wearing the SportSight CLs. This may partially be due to the fact that subjects noted fewer perceptions of stray light with SportSight CLs than with the other modalities. Likewise, subjects reported an equal number of perceived reflections while wearing SportSight CLs and clear CLs but significantly more while wearing tinted spectacles.

Conclusion: Objective findings demonstrated that SportSight CLs provide similar performance with regard to distance depth perception and texture gradient recognition to tinted spectacles. Subjective data indicate that visual comfort of the SportSight CLs was superior to tinted spectacles and clear CLs. Additionally, a trend in subjective data demonstrated that the subjects perceived improved performance on the tests while wearing the SportSight CLs.


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