Morphological changes in the conjunctiva, episclera and sclera following short-term miniscleral contact lens wear in rigid lens neophytes

Alonso-Caneiro, David, Vincent, Stephen J., & Collins, Michael J. (2016) Morphological changes in the conjunctiva, episclera and sclera following short-term miniscleral contact lens wear in rigid lens neophytes. Contact Lens and Anterior Eye, 39(1), pp. 53-61.

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To quantify the influence of short-term wear of miniscleral contact lenses on the morphology of the corneo-scleral limbus, the conjunctiva, episclera and sclera.


OCT images of the anterior eye were captured before, immediately following 3h of wear and then 3h after removal of a miniscleral contact lens for 10 young (27±5 years) healthy participants (neophyte rigid lens wearers). The region of analysis encompassed 1mm anterior, to 3.5mm posterior to the scleral spur. Natural diurnal variations in thickness were measured on a separate day and compensated for in subsequent analyses.


Following 3h of lens wear, statistically significant tissue thinning was observed across all quadrants, with a mean decrease in thickness of -24.1±3.6μm (p<0.001), which diminished, but did not return to baseline 3h after lens removal (-16.9±1.9μm, p<0.001). The largest tissue compression was observed in the superior quadrant (-49.9±8.5μm, p<0.01) and in the annular zone 1.5mm from the scleral spur (-48.2±5.7μm), corresponding to the approximate edge of the lens landing zone. Compression of the conjunctiva/episclera accounted for about 70% of the changes.


Optimal fitting miniscleral contact lenses worn for three hours resulted in significant tissue compression in young healthy eyes, with the greatest thinning observed superiorly, potentially due to the additional force of the eyelid, with a partial recovery of compression 3h after lens removal. Most of the morphological changes occur in the conjunctiva/episclera layers.

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ID Code: 92589
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: miniscleral contact lens, scleral thickness, corneo-scleral limbus, optical coherence tomography
DOI: 10.1016/j.clae.2015.06.008
ISSN: 1367-0484
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > OPTOMETRY AND OPHTHALMOLOGY (111300)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Optometry & Vision Science
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2016 British Contact Lens Association
Deposited On: 03 Feb 2016 01:36
Last Modified: 07 Feb 2016 09:48

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