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 sold by the company. Stephanie Guarisco of Clovis alleges that she experienced severe pain and injury after using the lenses for only a few weeks, ultimately resulting in the loss of her right eye. She is suing Hubble’s parent company, Vision Path, for negligence, consumer fraud, and other charges.
According to the lawsuit, Guarisco purchased Hubble contact lenses through the company’s website in early 2020 and wore them until late July of the same year. She then experienced severe pain in her left eye, leading her to visit the emergency room. An optometrist later diagnosed her with iridocyclitis, an inflamed iris condition. Guarisco was subsequently diagnosed with a corneal ulcer in her left eye. Her eye issues worsened, and she sought medical attention for allergy-like symptoms in her right eye, including discharge, redness, itching, and visual disturbances. After being diagnosed with a corneal ulcer in her right eye, she reported decreased vision.
Despite undergoing several unsuccessful surgeries to repair the ulcer, Guarisco now has a permanent prosthetic in her right eye socket, according to the lawsuit. She claims that Hubble contact lenses, which are made in Taiwan using Methafilcon A, a silicone-based polymer, caused her vision loss. Many optometrists argue that Methafilcon A does not provide enough oxygen to the eye and is an inappropriate material for making contact lenses.
In addition to the allegations regarding the defective lenses, the lawsuit 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 takes the allegations seriously and has launched an internal investigation into the matter. Founded in 2016, Vision Path sells Hubble branded contact lenses online through a mail-order subscription model.
This is not the first legal trouble for Hubble and Vision Path. In January 2022, Vision Path paid $3.5 million in a settlement to the Federal Trade Commission for violating contact lens rules, including failing to obtain proper optometrist prescriptions for customers’ lenses. The company also paid nearly $375,000 in a settlement in Texas last June for deceptive marketing practices.
The lawsuit filed by Guarisco highlights the potential dangers of using defective contact lenses and raises concerns about the materials used in their production.