Contact Lenses: A Promising Drug Delivery System
Presently, around 100 million people are estimated to be wearing contact lenses, and the number is growing exponentially. Though the main use of contact lenses is for improving ametropia problems, they also hold attention as therapeutic devices for the treatment of ocular pain, promotion of corneal healing, maintenance of corneal epithelial hydration, and drug delivery. Contact lenses are developing as an substitute ophthalmic drug delivery system to resolve the problems of the conventional topical application methods [1,2]. The interest in evolving contact lenses for drug delivery has expressively increased in the last decade as several new techniques have been developed for designing contact lenses for extended drug delivery. The newest studies show that contact lenses are able to achieve prolonged release of a few weeks without any significant effect on critical lens properties. The future appears promising for drug eluting contact lenses but several challenges remain to be overcome regarding processing and storage issues, lack of use in the elderly population, regulatory issues, high costs of clinical studies and cost-benefit analysis. Contact lenses are attractive for ocular drug delivery systems as significantly prolong the residence time of the drug in the eye, high degree of comfort which improve patient compliance, higher efficiency and low side effects and, hence increase the ocular drug bioavailability.
Keywords: Lenses, polymer, methods, therapeutic, eye
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