Frequently Asked Questions on Orthokeratology
Emerald Ortho-K lenses are fast and effective!
Emerald Ortho-K lenses can effectively control myopia and also slow down the progression of myopia. Studies have shown that among the proper ortho-k lens patients, the progression of myopia (or increase in power) may be slowed to -0.37D or less per year.
Considering orthokeratology treatment via the Emerald lens is an excellent investment on maintaining healthy eyes and vision for your child. If treatment can begin an an early age, we may be able to slow down the progression of myopia and prevent your child from developing "high myopia." High myopia is typically having a prescription of -6.00 D or more, and can lead to higher risks of retinal detachments and patients are more likely to experience floaters.
Ortho-k shaping lenses are special gas permeable contact lenses that are designed to progressively reshape the central surface of the cornea systematically, similar to the effects of lasers in reversing nearsightedness. However, unlike laser surgery, the effect of ortho-k treatment is temporary and reversible.
No. While orthokeratology can help most individuals (including those with certain types and amounts of astigmatism and moderately high myopia) improve their vision, the procedure is often most effective for those prescriptions falling within a specific range. Additional factors may include individual corneal rigidity and shape factors, as well as an ability to wear contact lenses. At Standard Optometry, a thorough consultation and examination using advanced computerized diagnostic instrumentation can easily determine if orthokeratology is right for an individual.
The Emerald Ortho-K lens is safe when appropriately fitted and managed properly. Many people have been able to eliminate their dependence on their glasses and standard contacts with no adverse effects. Unlike surgical procedures like photorefractive keratectomy (PRK), laser-assisted in-situ keratomileusis (LASIK), and laser assisted subepithelial keratectomy (LASEK), the corneal tissue is not incised or vaporized by a laser.
As with all contact lenses, proper lens care and handling must be performed to maintain eye health. The state-of-the-art, high permeability GP materials now available provide adequate amounts of oxygen to the tissues of the eye. Non-surgical corneal reshaping with contact lenses can be performed on people of any age, and particularly on children at least 8 years of age, as long as their eyes are healthy. Ortho-k holds particular appeal for people who participate in sports, or who work in dusty, dirty environments that can cause problems for regular contact lenses.
The Emerald Ortho-K lens generally requires four to seven consecutive nights of wearing the shaping lenses to achieve the desired results. It may take somewhat longer for those with higher degrees of nearsightedness.
Overnight wearing of the shaping lenses is surprisingly comfortable. Most patients are unaware of their presence within a short time after insertion. And because the Emerald ortho-k shapers are made in large diameters and worn during sleep, the normal adaptation is very short. With GP contacts, a sensation of lens awareness can result from interaction of the eyelid with the edge of the lens during blinking. (This doesn't happen with soft lenses because they are larger and remain tucked under the eyelids.) But when ortho-k lenses are worn during sleep, blinking and lens awareness generally are not a problem.
Most people will need to wear the Emerald shaping lenses 6 to 7 consecutive nights in order to enjoy good, unaided vision during the entire day. Patients with lesser degrees of myopia (nearsightedness) may find wearing them every other night satisfactory. However, this will be determined on an individual basis by the eye care practitioner.
Once the desired myopia reduction is obtained, the final shaping lenses act as retainers to maintain that level. Regular contact lenses are not needed. Glasses may be needed for reading or other part-time use. During the initial treatment period, if unaided vision does not last a full day, the patient will be given soft disposable contact lenses to wear to maintain normal distance vision.