A New Mexico woman has filed a lawsuit against Hubble Contacts, claiming that she had to have her eye removed due to defective contact lenses. Stephanie Guarisco of Clovis alleges that she experienced severe pain and injury after using the lenses for only a few weeks, which eventually led to the loss of her right eye. Guarisco is suing Hubble’s parent company, Vision Path, for negligence, consumer fraud, and other counts.
According to the lawsuit filed on June 30 in New York State Supreme Court, Guarisco purchased Hubble contact lenses through the company’s website in early 2020. She wore the daily lenses until late July of that same year. Weeks later, she experienced severe pain in her left eye and sought medical attention. An optometrist diagnosed her with an inflamed iris condition called iridocyclitis. Guarisco was later diagnosed with a corneal ulcer of the left eye. However, her eye issues worsened, and she had to visit the emergency room for allergy-like symptoms in her right eye, including discharge, redness, itching, and visual disturbances. She was diagnosed with a corneal ulcer of the right eye and reported decreased vision in that eye.
Guarisco underwent several surgeries in an attempt to repair the ulcer, but they were unsuccessful. As a result, she now has a permanent prosthetic placed in her right eye socket. Guarisco claims that Hubble contact lenses caused her vision loss because they are made in Taiwan using Methafilcon A, a silicone-based polymer. Many optometrists argue that this material is inappropriate for making contact lenses as it does not provide enough oxygen to the eye. While Hubble’s contact lenses are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, methafilcon A is considered an inferior material and is no longer prescribed for contact lenses in the United States.
The lawsuit also accuses Vision Path of not following proper procedures for verifying customer prescriptions and paying customers for positive reviews of the lenses on its website. Vision Path has stated that it is taking the allegations seriously and has initiated an internal investigation.
Vision Path, the parent company of Hubble Contacts, previously paid a $3.5 million settlement to the Federal Trade Commission in January 2022 for various violations, including failing to obtain proper optometrist prescriptions for customers’ contact lenses. The company also paid nearly $375,000 in a settlement in Texas last June for deceptive marketing practices.
Founded in 2016, Vision Path sells Hubble branded contact lenses online through a mail-order subscription model. The company claims that every set of lenses undergoes a thorough inspection process.