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A Vision beyond Prescription

A Vision beyond Prescription
Learn how one local man is changing how the world sees with new adaptive lens technology, making self-corrected vision possible with the blink of an eye and simple twist of a finger.
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Adlens adaptive eyewear features fluid-filled lens technology, which allows the user to manually adjust their lens focus at the flip of a switch.

If you’re squinting to read this, you might need glasses. Not a big deal, considering the four-eyed population has a myriad of traditional optical options available.

 

But what would you do if an emergency leaves you without corrective eyewear, or, if you’re one of the 314 million people worldwide who have uncorrected vision without access to eye care? A solution now exists with eyeglasses featuring self-adjustable lenses, allowing for perfect vision with the turn of a dial.


Lance Snarr, CEO of Cincinnati-based Thoma & Sutton Eye Care is working to bring this new adaptive lens technology to the market and help solve vision impairment globally. Snarr has a good eye — for business. Walk into one of Thoma & Sutton Eye Care’s 20 Tri-State retail stores and see for yourself all the fashionable eyewear and contact lens choices they have available.


It makes sense Snarr would be involved with the latest in vision technology, working as a consultant for the U.K.-based company Adlens. The company works to bring their products to developing nations in need of vision correction and to global markets where glasses are needed in emergency situations, such as natural disasters.

 

Snarr’s involvement with Adlens began more than three years ago, after former LensCrafters’ CEO, Dean Butler brought him on to sell it commercially in Japan. Snarr has been more than happy to return to his roots in the optical industry.

 

Before Thoma & Sutton, Snarr worked for the premiere Japanese optical company, Paris Miki for seven years, overseeing international financial investments. Snarr says the Japanese government’s concern for emergency preparedness makes Adlens’ products a perfect solution to Japan’s market.

 

“The idea is Adlens’ eyeglasses would serve as a spare pair in case of emergencies, like the recent tsunami and earthquake in Japan,” says Snarr. “This is a lower-priced product, aimed at organizations to have in stock for emergency supply and eventually, they can be made available for personal use.”

 

Snarr also notes the great philanthropic work being done with Adlens’ Vision for a Nation project. Focused in Rwanda - a nation where 57 percent of the population cannot afford or have access to eyeglasses - Vision for a Nation works to distribute adjustable eyeglasses to those in need. The eyeglasses can be dispensed by healthcare workers and volunteers, making it easier to reach millions more than the already limited resources of doctors in the region.

 

How do these spheric-shaped specs work? Snarr passionately demonstrates the Adlens technology, first created by an Oxford University professor. The adaptive lens eyeglasses feature hollow lenses with a clear plastic sheet on the inside. With a turn of a dial, a fluid is pumped between the plastic, allowing you to adjust the strength needed to see near or far. The lenses are then sealed and the user can remove the dial, leaving them with a pair of eyeglasses perfect for their eyes.

 

Adlens’ has two designs-the p.o.v. with fluid-filled lenses and the emergensee, a continuously adjustable pair with Alvarez lens technology. The Alvarez lenses are more ideal for emergency situations, while the fluid-filled lenses allows more focus and has therapeutic applications. Snarr admits the frames are a bit fashionably-challenged, and are certainly not meant to replace your pair of Pradas. But having an extra pair in times of small scale emergencies, to large-scale catastrophes, is essential. As the technology becomes more advanced, Snarr says so will the design.

 

For now, you won’t find the Adlens’ products on display at a Thoma & Sutton store, but maybe in the future, when you accidently sit on your glasses (because you couldn’t see them), you’ll know where to go to get a spare.

 

To learn more about Adlens, visit adlens.com, and click here to find your nearest Thoma & Sutton location. Click on the play button below to learn more about Adlens' Vision for a Nation project.

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Cher Schaeper -

Cher Schaeper is Cincy Chic's sales intern. Send her an e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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