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FOR THOSE DIAGNOSED WITH AN ASTIGMATISM, THERE'S GOOD NEWS FROM BAUSCH & LOMB

 FOR THOSE DIAGNOSED WITH AN ASTIGMATISM, THERE'S GOOD NEWS
 FROM BAUSCH & LOMB
 ROCHESTER, N.Y., May 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Good news for the millions of Americans diagnosed with an astigmatism who've been told for years that they couldn't wear soft contact lenses. Industry leader Bausch & Lomb has made technological and manufacturing breakthroughs that now make it possible for just about all those with an astigmatism to be fit with soft contact lenses. In fact, the company now makes almost 50,000 different lens prescriptions for people with an astigmatism and believes that 98 percent of those with this common vision condition can get crisp, clear vision with these new soft contact lenses.
 "This is very significant news for the three-out-of-four adults diagnosed with an astigmatism," said Linda Coffey of Bausch & Lomb's Contact Lens Division. "Many of whom thought that contact lenses simply weren't available to correct an astigmatism."
 Astigmatism is one of the most commonly diagnosed vision conditions, effecting more than 38 million adults in this country. It is caused by an irregular curvature of the cornea and/or the crystalline lens inside the eye that prevents the eye from viewing an entire image in perfect focus.
 Symptoms of astigmatism can include eyestrain, headaches and blurred vision. This common eye condition can be realized at any age and can occur in conjunction with near-sightedness or far-sightedness.
 "In the past, many people with an astigmatism found that early contact lens design did not offer the range of sizes and prescriptions necessary to fit their unique vision correction needs," noted Coffey. "That initial disappointment has perpetuated the myth that people with an astigmatism cannot wear soft contact lenses.
 "Bausch & Lomb has dedicated tremendous resources toward the research and development of toric contact lenses for the correction of astigmatism," she added. "We encourage people with an astigmatism who want to wear contact lenses to take advantage of what our advanced technology has brought forth -- almost 50,000 prescription options."
 An astigmatic eye has thousands of variations that require customized correction. This means that vision correction is more complicated and may require a few trials before a successful contact lens fit is found. Bausch & Lomb guarantees a perfect fit for virtually all consumers. The company allows eye doctors to return patients' lenses if they're not completely satisfied, for another trial pair.
 It has been estimated that less than four percent of those diagnosed with an astigmatism wear soft toric contact lenses. It has also been estimated that those with an astigmatism who have tried contacts in the past and were less than happy with the results have not worn contacts in approximately four years. "One could conclude that many may not be aware of the advances in contact lens design or new lens care solutions that make soft contact lenses more comfortable and easier to care for," Coffey said.
 For more information on astigmatism and contact lenses, consumers can consult their vision care professional or call Bausch & Lomb's information Hotline at 1-800-552-7388. Interested consumers can also request Bausch & Lomb's Desk Guide to Astigmatism by sending a self-addressed stamped envelope to Bausch & Lomb InVision Institute, JFK P.O. Box 9154, Boston, Mass., 02114.
 Bausch & Lomb, founded in 1853, is the world's leading manufacturer of contact lenses and lens care products. Bausch & Lomb has manufactured more than 200 million soft contact lenses since it introduced the technology into the United States two decades ago. In addition, the company has made specialty lenses for the correction of astigmatism and presbyopia since 1981 and is recognized as the industry leader in specialty lens technology. Bausch & Lomb has more than 13,000 employees worldwide -- more than 3,500 employees are located in the company's Rochester, N.Y. headquarters.
 -0- 5/5/92
 /CONTACT: Rick Kase of Baush & Lomb, 716-338-8252 or 716-263-4677; or Kelly Ann Sherry, of Cone Communications, 617-227-2111 for Bausch & Lomb/ CO: Bausch & Lomb ST: New York IN: HEA MTC SU:


PB-TM -- NEFNS1 -- 6871 05/06/92 07:31 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:May 6, 1992
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