About Astigmatism

What is Astigmatism?
Uncorrected Astigmatism vs Corrected Astigmatism

Astigmatism is not a disease, as some may think. It is a slight difference in the shape of your eye, causing fuzzy, blurred vision at all distances. It belongs to a group of common imperfections of the eye—called refractive errors—that also include nearsightedness, farsightedness and presbyopia. Anyone can have astigmatism and it often runs in families. If you are near-or farsighted, you may develop astigmatism that needs correction.

Astigmatism usually results from being born with a cornea—the dome front part of the eye—that is oval-shaped rather than round. This irregular shape bends light rays too much, so you are unable to focus an image properly.

Sometimes the cornea can change and lead to astigmatism because of an eye injury, infection, surgery, or in rare cases, some diseases.

Astigmatism Symptoms

In some people, astigmatism is so mild they do not realize they have it until an eye exam, or when it becomes noticeable enough to bother them. You may experience one or more of these common signs and symptoms:

  • blurry or distorted images, at all distances
  • squinting
  • headaches
  • trouble seeing similar-looking letters, or at night
  • fatigue
  • eye discomfort or irritation
Astigmatism and You

As with every condition, how one copes with astigmatism depends on how severe it gets or how stable it becomes. If you work with text and do a lot of reading, or need to drive at night often, it can be frustrating. Once you are diagnosed and your eye care professional recommends corrective treatment, it is very manageable with contact lenses for astigmatism—also called toric lenses. The advanced technology and variety of contact lenses today make them an excellent choice for people who engage in sports and other activities, or want a personal look unencumbered by eyeglasses.

To learn more about Astigmatism, its symptoms and treatments, visit myeyes.com.

Frequently Asked Questions about AIR OPTIX® for Astigmatism Contact Lenses

Q: What is astigmatism?

Astigmatism is a slight difference in the shape of your eye, causing fuzzy, blurred vision at all distances. The oval shape of eyes with astigmatism causes images to be processed differently than eyes with a more circular shape, as shown below.

How a circular-shaped eye processes images: How an eye with astigmatism processes images:
Circular-shaped eye
Eye with astigmatism

Because astigmatism causes images to be processed at two points on the back of the eye, each lens that corrects for astigmatism require two prescriptions that must remain in the same place relative to the eye. If the lens rotates, vision will become blurry. So, lens stability is key to consistently clear vision.

Q: What are toric contact lenses?


Contact lenses that correct astigmatism are called toric contact lenses. They are made specifically to address the slight difference in shape of your eye that can cause fuzzy, blurred vision. A toric contact lens has two prescriptions—one to correct astigmatism, and the other to correct near- or farsightedness. They are designed to remain stable on the eye and not rotate as you blink or move your eyes.

Q: What are AIR OPTIX® for Astigmatism contact lenses?

AIR OPTIX® for Astigmatism contact lenses are toric contact lenses that correct astigmatism, while providing better overall, constant and stable vision.1 And because of the unique ultra-smooth surface technology and proprietary lens material, AIR OPTIX® for Astigmatism contact lenses also give you all-day comfort that lasts throughout the wearing period and breathable* materials for white, healthy-looking eyes. If you have astigmatism, talk to your eye care professional about AIR OPTIX® for Astigmatism contact lenses.

Q: What prescriptions are available for AIR OPTIX® for Astigmatism contact lenses?

Today, there is an AIR OPTIX® for Astigmatism contact lens for almost every person with astigmatism. Your eye care professional can determine the contact lens and correction that are best for you. The quick contact lens snapshot below includes all available prescriptions.

AIR OPTIX® for Astigmatism contact lenses product information
Sphere Powers:
Cylinder Powers:
+6.00D to -6.00D (0.25D steps)
-0.75D; -1.25D; -1.75D; -2.25D
Full circle in
10° steps
-6.50D to -10.00D (0.50D steps)
-0.75D; -1.25D; -1.75D; -2.25D
Full circle in
10° steps
Material: lotrafilcon B
Water Content: 33%
Diameter: 14.5 mm
Base curve: 8.7 mm
Dk/t: 138 @ -3.00D
Surface: Unique, ultra-smooth surface technology
Center thickness: 0.102 mm @ -3.00D
Handling tint:
Blue visibility tint
Back surface: Toric
Stabilization: Unique precision balance 8|4™ design
Scribe marks: Scribe marks at 3, 6, and 9 o'clock (6 o'clock scribe mark is slightly wider to differentiate from 3 and 9)
Wearing schedule: Daily wear and up to 6 nights extended wear
Recommended replacement schedule: Monthly
Recommended lens care: OPTI-FREE® PureMoist® Contact Lens Solution
Q: How do I care for my
AIR OPTIX® for Astigmatism contact lenses?

Click here for general information about contact lens care and wear.

  • 1. Brobst A, Wang C, Rappon J. Clinical comparison of the visual performance of silicone hydrogel toric lenses with different stabilization systems. Cont Lens Anterior Eye. 2009;32(5):243.

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