Modern scleral contact lenses: A review

Eef van der Worp, Dina Bornman, Daniela Lopes Ferreira, Miguel Faria-Ribeiro, Nery Garcia-Porta, José M González-Meijome*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Scleral contact lenses (ScCL) have gained renewed interest during the last decade. Originally, they were primarily used for severely compromised eyes. Corneal ectasia and exposure conditions were the primary indications. However, the indication range of ScCL in contact lens practices seems to be expanding, and it now increasingly includes less severe and even non-compromised eyes, too. All lenses that partly or entirely rest on the sclera are included under the name ScCL in this paper; although the Scleral Lens Education Society recommends further classification. When a lens partly rests on the cornea (centrally or peripherally) and partly on the sclera, it is called a corneo-scleral lens. A lens that rests entirely on the sclera is classified as a scleral lens (up to 25 mm in diameter maximum). When there is full bearing on the sclera, further distinctions of the scleral lens group include mini-scleral and large-scleral lenses. This manuscript presents a review of the current applications of different ScCL (all types), their fitting methods, and their clinical outcomes including potential adverse events. Adverse events with these lenses are rare, but the clinician needs to be aware of them to avoid further damage in eyes that often are already compromised. The use of scleral lenses for non-pathological eyes is discussed in this paper.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)240-50
Number of pages11
JournalContact Lens & Anterior Eye
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2014


  • Contact Lenses
  • Equipment Design
  • Equipment Failure Analysis
  • Humans
  • Prosthesis Fitting
  • Refractive Errors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vision Disorders

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