PURPOSE. To investigate the factors affecting microvascular responses in the bulbar conjunctiva of habitual contact lens (HCL) wearers. METHODS. A functional slit-lamp biomicroscope (FSLB) was used to image the temporal bulbar conjunctiva of habitual contact lens (HCL) wearers and non–contact lens (NCL) wearers. The vessel diameters and blood flow velocities (BFVs) were measured. Fractal analysis using Dbox as vessel density and D0 as vessel complexity were used to quantitatively analyze the microvascular network. One eye each of 91 NCL wearers and 75 HCL wearers was imaged. RESULTS. The BFV of NCL wearers was 0.50 ± 0.14 mm/s, which was negatively correlated with age (r = -0.22, P < 0.05). The BFV, vessel diameter, Dbox, and D0 of HCL wearers was significantly higher than NCL wearers (P < 0.05). In these HCL wearers, BFVs were positively correlated with contact lens (CL) hours of wear per day and CL days of wear per week. BFV, Dbox, and D0 were not related to CL years of wear, CL power, CL base curve, and CL diameter (P > 0.05). CONCLUSIONS. Vascular responses on the bulbar conjunctiva occurred in HCL wearers and appeared to be unrelated to sex or age, CL years of wear, and lens parameters, indicating that wearing a CL itself may be the predominant factor inducing these responses.
- Blood flow velocity
- Bulbar conjunctiva
- Functional slit-lamp biomicroscopy (FSLB)
- Microvascular network
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sensory Systems
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience