What does axis mean on my prescription?

The axis figure on a contact lens prescription is for people who suffer from astigmatism, and indicates the required location of cylindrical power on the lens. Put simply, this determines the angle of visual correction that someone with astigmatism would need, due to the irregular curvature of their eye.

Typically given in 10s, the axis figure on a contact lens figure can be between 1 and 180. 90 means that the cylindrical power is positioned vertically to correct your astigmatism, whereas 180 would mean it was positioned horizontally.

What does the cylinder figure mean on my prescription?

The number given as the cylinder on a contact lens prescription is again necessary for those with astigmatism as it indicates the extra power required at the axis to correct the vision of an irregularly curved eye.

The figure can be plus (for long-sightedness) or minus (for short-sightedness) and is always given alongside the usual spherical power on a contact lens prescription.

What are toric contact lenses?

Toric contact lenses are, quite simply, contact lenses that have been specially designed to offer astigmatic correction. Your toric contacts will include a cylinder and axis, which will both be provided on the packaging and on your contact lens prescription.

Quick links:


A guide to astigmatism
How do toric contact lenses work?
FAQs