Even though a majority of ECPs recommend specialty lenses and coatings to patients, there is no consensus about what “specialty” means in eyeglass lenses. Generally in the optical industry, a “specialty” lens is any lens that is prescribed for a specific purpose rather than general use. Computer lenses, digital device lenses, reading lenses, driving lenses, sports lenses (golf, shooting, boating), sports safety lenses, or occupational lenses all fall in this category.
Most labs consider “specialty” to be lenses that fall outside the realm of standard processing. This includes high Rx, prism, slabs, wraps, custom drill mounts, antique frames, and other types of “manual” jobs. This type of work requires more attention, more hands-on work, and many times special equipment.