Bedisha Biswas, Bachelor of Optometry
Undergraduate student, Pailan College of Management and Technology
Transition, or photochromatic lenses are the lenses that darken in the sunlight and lighten in softer light or the dark. Now, Acuvue’s launches a new Oasys with Transitions Light Intelligent Technology soft contact lenses, which adapt to different lightening conditions automatically like the transition sunglasses.
Johnson & Johnson teamed up with Transitions Optical and Created these colour changing CLs (2019) (Table 1).
What is a Transition Contact Lens?
Transition contact lenses have tiny molecules of silver halide and chloride embedded in them, which is invisible and disintegrates when exposed to UV rays in the region of 300-400nm.
How it works?
These Transition CLs are made with “Light Intelligent Technology” – a photochromic additive – mixed into the soft hydrogel material that creates the lens. When this photochromic additive is exposed to UV light or blue light from screens and lightbulbs, it darkens the lens to block UV radiation and excessive light waves, just how sunglasses work.
*Figure-1: courtesy: byrdie.com
Table 1: Properties of Johnson & Johnson’s transition contact lens
|Manufacturer||Type||Power||Parameters||Appearance||Replacement Schedule||Lenses per box|
|Johnson and Johnson||Silicon Hydrogel||+8.00 to -10.00D||Material: 62% senofilcon A
Water Content: 38%
Base Curve: 7.85-10.0 mm
|Mild Purplish Brown (in normal state)
Dark purplish brown (while expose to UV)
- Remain 15% dark indoors
- Turn 70% dark in UV light when on the eye
- 60 sec to reach 70% dark when in UV light
- 90 sec to fade back to 15% when not exposed to UV
Unavailable for Astigmatic and presbyopic patients
How long do transition CLs last?
Transition CLs are designed to last two years, which is generally the lifetime of someone’s vision-care prescription.
How much does Transition CLs cost?
The cost of these CLs depends on the prescription and how many lenses one chooses to purchase. Transition CLs add roughly $100-$400 to the cost of prescription eyeglasses. One should also consult with an eye-care provider for further details.
- This concept Transition CLs are awesome for people with severe sensitivity towards light or photophobia as it blocks 99% UV-B and 100% UV-A
- The lenses automatically adapt to light conditions, reduce eyestrain, fatigue, and eye squeezing in sunlight.
- It is also lessened glare by regulating the amount of natural light.
- Adjusting our eyes to digital screens or TVs
- Regular transition glasses take long time to turn clear when it ahead indoor. These CLs smoothly turn clear within 90sec by not compromising the visual quality.
*Figure-2: courtesy: jnj.com [Squint less, See More!]
- It gives UV protection to the cornea and into the eye, but it is not a true replacement of sunglasses. Because these CLs do not provide a complete UV coverage for the external eye and eyelids.
- Upon exposer to the sunlight the CLs darken the colour, it may not be cosmetically very appealing for those people who have light coloured eye.
- Transitional lens can be quite cost effective.
*Figure-3: courtesy: cnet.com
Who is suitable candidate for Transition CLs?
These are suitable for light-sensitive people, athletes and those who have jobs outdoor as well as indoor work under uncomfortable office light and work with digital screen.
Transition CLs are a great way to protect your eyes without wearing glasses. They reduce glare by collecting extra energy in the lower end of the light spectrum. But those people who do not find contact lenses comfortable, it is not worth purchasing.
Ultimately, it is up to a patient’s decision either they want to use this CL or not, but please feel free to contact with an Optometrist or Ophthalmologist for detailed information or eye-health advice. As they do care for your eyes, they will guide you better.
The blog is written solely for educational purpose, and it does not have any financial support and conflict of interest.
- K. Khurana: Theory and Practice of Optics and Refraction: Photochromatic Glass- 240; Contact Lens- 250-62
- Acuvue OASYS with Transition, United States, 2019: acuvue.co.in
- Ryan Corte, OD: What’s New in Contact Lenses?- Modern Optometry: November/December 2019
- Reena Mukamal: High-Tech Contact Lenses That Go Beyond Correcting Vision; Renewed by: William Barry Lee MD. American Academy for Ophthalmology: Feb 05,2020