Frequently Asked Questions about Corneal Refractive Therapy

  • Five Points Eye Care Services

    How new is Corneal Refractive Therapy?
    Contact lens corneal reshaping is not a new concept. Previous corneal reshaping designs were only as successful as technology allowed. These days there are many advancements in technology available to help design the contact lenses required for orthokeratology. These include computerized corneal mapping, computerized manufacturing, and oxygen permeable contact lens materials that help to produce a therapeutic contact lens design like no other.



    Is Corneal Refractive Therapy permanent?
    No. It is temporary. If you stop wearing the lenses regularly while you sleep, your vision will return to its original state in as little as 72 hours.



    Is everyone a candidate for Corneal Refractive Therapy?


    Not everyone. The procedure is for individuals with low to moderate nearsightedness (up to  - 6.00 units) as well as low amounts of farsightedness (up to +4.00 units) with or without astigmatism (up to -1.75 units). Presbyopia (requiring reading glasses or bifocals) may be correctable with corneal refractive therapy using monovision (one eye corrected for near vision and one corrected for distance vision). You might still need reading glasses. However, since there are variations in patient physiology and visual needs, the decision for corneal refractive therapy, at any age, can only be made after a thorough eye exam and the recommendations of the eye care professional.



    How long does it take to reach good vision?


    Most patients have rapid improvement in the first few days of treatment and achieve nearly their optimum vision in 10 to 14 days.



    What do I do to see adequately in the period of time between when I start with Corneal Refractive Therapy and when I achieve full treatment?
    It's important to understand that for a time after you have begun treatment, but before sufficient treatment is realized, your old glasses or contact lenses will no longer be the appropriate prescription. It may involve insertion of your corneal refractive therapy contact lenses for part of the day or some use of temporary soft lenses in different prescriptions as an option. We will discuss what your options are for visual correction during that period of time.


    Are there any risks involved with wearing Corneal Refractive Therapy contact lenses?
    There is a small risk involved when any contact lens is worn. It is not expected that the contact lenses for corneal refractive therapy will provide a risk that is greater than other contact lenses.



    Can I see with my Corneal Refractive Therapy contact lenses in?
    Yes. One of the great features of the corneal refractive therapy contact lenses is that if you have to get up in the middle of the night, you will be able to see where you are going. Or if during the initial treatment phase you find you need some form of vision correction, you can put in your corneal refractive therapy contact lenses and see clearly.



    How often will I have to replace my Corneal Refractive Therapy contact lenses?
    Generally speaking the corneal refractive therapy contact lenses will have to be replaced every 2 to 3 years. However, depending on factors such as protein buildup, how well the lenses are taken care of, etc., the lenses may have to be replaced more or less frequently.



    How do I care for my Corneal Refractive Therapycontact lenses?
    Your lenses should be chemically disinfected after every use (do not use heat disinfection methods). We will instruct you about which care system is best for you.



    How much does Corneal Refractive Therapy cost?
    Corneal refractive therapy is similar to getting braces in that we are slowly moving a part of the body (in this case the cornea instead of the teeth) to a different position.  This is a process that takes special certification and training and is much more intensive than a routine contact lens fitting.  Please contact our office for more information about specific fees.  Our fees include the pre-treatment; all visits related to your wearing corneal refractive therapy contact lenses during the first year (not emergencies like foreign bodies, infections, etc.); and all contact lenses necessary the 1st year to achieve the desired results. If a lens is broken or lost by the patient during the first 12 months, a replacement cost is incurred.