Last updated 3/29/2020
Where is Lobob ESC?
Optimum by Lobob Extra Strength Cleaner... Some of us know it as Optimum, some of us know it as Lobob, some of us know it as ESC. By any of these names, it's still the best darned "rub" cleaning solution for scleral lenses. (Except, of course Hydra PEG coated lenses, because it will strip the coating.)
Anyway, whatever you call it, it's out of production and we still don't know for sure whether, let alone when, it is coming back.
What's going on?
Lobob products were made by a contract manufacturer (Altaire) that had its operations interrupted by extensive recalls of eye care products in July 2019. Some of you may remember some massive recalls of over-the-counter eye drops and ointments.
The good news: Lobob has NOT been recalled.
The bad news: Lobob is not currently being produced.
As at this writing, to the best of my knowledge the manufacturing facility has still not resumed operations and while I've heard some mildly promising rumors in the recent past from people who should know, the potential impact of COVID-19 on the timeline is unknown.
What can I use in the meantime?
If you can't get Lobob ESC, please talk to your eye doctor about acceptable alternatives.
Unfortunately, the best alternatives (e.g. Miraflow and its generics) all seem to be out of stock in most places by now too, so we do not have an extra strength type cleaner to recommend. Most people, if they have used up their Lobob, are temporarily switching to a multi-purpose solution such as Unique pH, Tangible Clean or Boston Simplus.
They're not as good (at this particular job) but they do work fine.
Want to be notified if/when it's back?
Please click here and look for the "Email when available" link.
What about Lobob CDS?
Lobob CDS users will need to switch to another multi-purpose solution.
What about Sof/Pro2?
Sof/Pro2 (a generic for Miraflow, also made by the Lobob company) has unfortunately been discontinued.