Orthokeratology is a safe, non-surgical contact lens procedure to reduce or eliminate blurred vision caused by nearsightedness and astigmatism. It dramatically improves the natural vision. Ortho-K was developed in 1962 and has provided corrective care to thousands of patients through this therapeutic application of contact lenses. A series of special lenses are fit in stages to gently reshapes the eye and improve vision without damaging the cornea.
The eye is subject to defects when it grows. This unbalanced development causes an optical focusing problem which results in out of focus images on the retina. Myopia tends to be a progressive condition in youngsters, which may continue into adult years.
In the same sense-that teeth may be straightened by the use of braces, these structural irregularities of the eye (refractive errors), can be reduced or eliminated by the use of contact lenses. Unlike surgical methods, orthokeratology is gentle, gradual and reversible. By using Advanced Corneal Molding, the delicate tissue of the eye is not permanently altered or weakened.
"I was concerned that my daughter's eyes would continue to worsen and she would have eyes bad as mine. Now she sees clearly and her prescription hasn't worsened since she was treated." S.G.
Myopia, or nearsightedness of mild or moderate degrees (20/200 or better) usually can be corrected to 20/20-20/30. Higher degrees of myopia may gain dramatic improvement, allowing that person to function without lenses. Astigmatism of moderate amounts can also be reduced or eliminated, enhancing visual performance. With the new advanced computerized designs, and manufacturing equipment, better and faster results are obtained. The contact lens materials have also advanced allowing better safety and retention.
"I passed my Pilots FAA exam at 20/20 after testing at 20/200 only a few weeks ago."
COSTS FOR ORTHOKERATOLOGY
The cost for beginning this restorative process is somewhat more then a regular fitting of contact lenses. The technique of orthokeratology is dynamic. It requires ongoing checks and lens modifications to get the best results. The fee for this covers two month's contact lens care, which includes the initial fitting, routine contact lens checks, materials and modifications. Various financial arrangements make this quite affordable. The ultimate cost may vary depending on the nature of the case. Usually the fees are less than one-half of what most surgical methods cost.
PROCEDURE FOR ORTHOKERATOLOGY
"As a student wearing glasses, my vision continued to deteriorate to 20/400. Now I am able to go to school and see without wearing glasses or worrying about contact lenses." K.G
Special contact lenses are designed and fit in progressive stages every few weeks. to gently reshape the pliable cornea towards a less curved and more spherical shape. This reduces myopia and astigmatism, and dramatically-improves natural vision. The corneal changes are so gradual that you enjoy clear and comfortable vision with the contact lenses.
Orthokeratology lenses are made of highly breathable materials and new designs that promote corneal change. This process involves thorough examinations, lens changes and monitoring until the maximum desired results are achieved - usually in one to three months. Retainer lenses are then worn on a part-time basis as needed to stabilize the newly acquired shape and vision.
ORTHOKERATOLOGY SAFETY ISSUES
In use for over thirty-five years, this technique is safe land effective. Four university research studies have been completed on orthokeratology. All, studies found the procedure safe and effective without harmful side effects. It was stressed that proper care and monitoring are required. Only experienced practitioners in the field of contact lens therapy should utilize this procedure. Very few doctors have the expertise that this complex process demands. That is one reason why orthokeratology is not better known.
The basic purpose of orthokeratology is to improve visual function. Not everyone can presently benefit by those procedures. Yet, for many, this is a safe, non-surgical approach-to improving and restoring vision.
In children and adults with increasingly stronger prescriptions, orthokeratology can retard or halt the ever-increasing need to get stronger glasses. Research is showing that the effect may alter the person's long-term prescription.
British Ortho-K Society