Oleophobic, hydrophobic, and anti-static properties make Thindex easy to clean, and a scratch-resistant coating protects from abrasions.

As high-index lenses become less of a niche market and more of a major part of the lens industry, options like Vision-Ease’s Thindex are going well beyond what was once available.

Vision-Ease Lens, a company known mainly for its polycarbonate products, has entered the ultra-high index category with Thindex™, a lens with a 1.70 index of refraction. In a market already awash in high-index choices, Thindex has some features that distinguish it from its counterparts.

The company set out to design a lens that could compete in the arena by eradicating some common problems other high-index lenses display. Because most high-index lenses have a low Abbe value, they often create more peripheral aberration than traditional materials such as CR-39® monomer and crown glass. While the lenses are thin and light, the optics are compromised. In contrast, Thindex has a higher Abbe value than 1.67 and 1.74, resulting in less chromatic aberration.

Another difficulty with some other high-index lens materials is their occasional tendency to crack when used in three-piece mountings. Thindex was designed to combat this issue with its high tensile strength so it can take the normal abuses rimless patients will give it in stride. It is also four times as impact resistant as 1.74, which means it’s safer to wear.

Despite the lower index of refraction when compared to 1.74, the difference in thinness and lightness between Thindex and an ultra high-index material like 1.74 is practically undetectable; usually a few tenths (0.1mm) of a millimeter.

Pricewise, Thindex is positioned between 1.67 and 1.74. The company hopes to convince wearers of 1.67 that for just a little more, they can have a technically advantageous product, and that wearers of 1.74 index can get a comparable lens for a lower price.

In addition to its high index, Thindex uses an aspheric design to achieve its thin profile, making it up to 58% thinner than regular plastic. The finished single vision version comes standard with Vision-Ease’s SuperHydro AR treatment to transmit maximum light and reduce glare. Oleophobic, hydrophobic, and

Thindex (at left) uses an aspheric design to achieve its thin profile, making it up to 58% thinner than regular plastic.

anti-static properties make the lens easy to clean, and a scratch-resistant coating protects from abrasions. Coatings are notorious for making lenses more difficult to process, but Vision-Ease claims that labs have reported that Thindex edges well.

Thindex 1.70 is offered in a progressive design known as Novella that delivers an 11mm corridor and a 14mm fitting height, allowing smaller frames to be fit. The lens’ soft design offers a spacious 120° far vision field along with comfortable intermediate and near zones. The variable inset adjusts the corridor within each base curve, resulting in a wider and more stable field of near vision.

Novella accommodates prescriptions from +6.00D to -15.00D with up to a -4.00D cylinder and add powers from +1.00D to +3.50D.

Eyecare professionals have access to several marketing and informational materials, including a four-page brochure, a dispensing mat, a Novella fitting guide, and Novella lens marking clings.

Vision-Ease’s launch of Thindex 1.70 has expanded the high-index market with new features, proving that the exciting world of high-index technology is constantly advancing.

Kate Jacobs is an optician at the optical shop at Scheie Eye Institute at the University of Pennsylvania.

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