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Contact Lenses Prescription


If you are buying colored contact lenses online, you are required to submit your contact lenses prescription online. In United States, there are three different types of eye care practitioners: Opthalmologists (MDs), Optometrists (ODs) and Opticians. Only Opthalmologists and Optometrists are qualified to prescribe contact lenses. While Opticians are only licensed to prepare and fit contact lenses and cannot prescribe contact lenses. 

If you do not have your latest contact lenses prescription, you can call your qualified eye care practitioner to get a copy of your up-to-date contact lenses prescription. Don't take a chance on using an old prescription. Some eye care practitioners are reluctant to give a copy of prescription to their patient as they want to make it difficult for those patients to buy contact lenses from others. This is against the "Fairness to Contact Lens Consumers Act" and you have the right to get a copy of your prescription. So, next times after you have been fitted by a qualified eye care practitioner, make sure to ask for a copy of your prescription immediately.

Below are the guidelines to help you to understand your contact lenses prescription.

Typically, your contact lenses prescription will have the following information:

Eye Power (Sphere) BC (Base Curve) DIA (Diameter)
OD/OS -20.00 to +20.00 8.1 - 8.9 13.0 - 15.0

Eye
OD is right eye, OS is left eye

Power (also known as Sphere)
A measurement of the strength of your contact lenses. The power is a numerical decimal point between -20.00 to +20.00

BC (Base Curve)
A measurement of the inside curve of your contact lenses. The base curve is numerical decimal point between 8.1 to 8.9. In general, the base curve value is the same for both eyes.

DIA (Diameter)
A measurement of the diameter of your contact lenses. It has the numerical number between 13.0 to 15.0. Again, diameter value is usually the same for both eyes.

Below is an example of contact lenses prescription:


Brand: Johnson & Johnson Acuvue 2 Colors

OD BC:8.5 DIA: 14.4 Sphere/Power: -13.00
OS BC:8.5 DIA: 14.4 Sphere/Power: -15.00

For people with astigmatism, you also have to supply the following extra information.

CYL (Cylinder)
A measurement of the strength of your astigmatism. The values range from -0.75 to -9.75.

AXIS
A measurement of the location of your astigmatism in degree. The values range between 10 to 180.

Below is an example of contact lenses prescription with astigmatism:


Brand: Johnson & Johnson Acuvue 2 Colors

OD BC:8.5 DIA: 14.4 Sphere/Power: -13.00
OD CYL & AXIS: -1.25 x 10

OS BC:8.5 DIA: 14.4 Sphere/Power: -15.00
OS CYL & AXIS: -1.75 x 10


It is important that you ensure the accuracy when filling up your contact lenses prescription online. Likewise, make sure your prescription is correct when your contact lenses package arrive. As a wrong contact lenses prescription can damage a person's eyes and resulting in blurry vision as well as temporary discomfort such as headaches or difficulty in balancing.

Occasionally, some online stores may send you a different brand and claim there is not difference, do not accept it. Even though contact lenses may look the same from other brand, but materials and shapes may vary by brand. So, always make sure you get what you ordered. Otherwise, send an email to webcomplaints@ora.fda.gov if you don't the contact lenses your ordered.


 

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