Ortho-K Lenses FAQs From Our Sunnyvale Optometrist
Learn everything you need to know about Ortho-K, or orthokeratology, lenses from the Silicon Valley Eye Physicians' Ortho-K FAQs, or by visiting the Sunnyvale, CA, office.
What is Ortho-K?
Orthokeratology (also referred to as Ortho-K or Corneal Refractive Therapy) is an advanced and non-invasive vision correction option for patients who have low to mild myopia (nearsightedness). Using specially designed RGP contact lenses, Ortho-K allows for the gradual and safe reshaping of the cornea to improve your vision while you sleep.
How Does Ortho-K Work?
Special Ortho-K lenses work to gently reshape the cornea by redistributing the superficial cells of the corneal epithelium. Over time, the central corneal shape is flattened, allowing light the once only focused in front of the retina to properly focus on the retina. Worn while you sleep, the lenses are easily removed during the day to allow you to live out a normal lifestyle.
Is Ortho-K a Permanent Vision Correction Solution?
No, Ortho-K is a temporary vision correction solution. However, over time you may be able to wear the lenses less frequently. If you stop wearing them altogether, you can see your vision return to the pre-treated state in as little as 72 hours.
Am I a Candidate for Ortho-K Lenses?
An ideal candidate for Ortho-K should have a low to moderate level of nearsightedness. In most cases, the lenses will work best for patients who have a refractive error between -1.00 and -4.00. But it is important to keep in mind that results will vary from patient to patient. If you have dry eye, irregular corneal shape, corneal disease, lazy eye, or amblyopia, Ortho-K is not recommended.
How Can I Found Out if I am a Good Candidate?
If you are interested in Ortho-K lenses, you’ll first need to schedule an eye exam with our vision care team to determine if they'll work for you. During your initial exam, you can expect to receive a full vision workup, an ocular health exam and an evaluation of your corneal shape. If we determine that you're a good candidate, you may be trial fitted for lenses. From there, you can expect to make several more visits to our offices to evaluate the fit of your lenses.
What are the Age Limitations for Ortho-K?
Unlike other more invasive vision correction options, there are no age restrictions for Ortho-K. These special corrective lenses are ideal for children, adolescents, and adults. In many cases, our doctors will recommend Orthokeratology over regular eyeglasses or contact lenses for athletes and those with a more active lifestyle because they are less likely to inhibit your day-to-day life
How Long Does Ortho-K Treatment Take to Work?
In the majority of cases, patients will see a rapid improvement in their vision within the first few nights of wearing their lenses. While the length of time needed to achieve your optimal vision depends on your initial refractive error and other factors, most patients see their vision stabilize after about 1 to 2 months. After this time, you may only have to wear your lenses every other day or as little as 2 to 3 times a week. However, you must continue to wear the lenses for as long as you want to maintain your new corneal shape and vision clarity.
How Many Office Visits Can I Expect?
After your initial dispensing visit, you may be required to return to our office for several follow-up appointments to monitor your progress. A typical follow-up schedule may include visits after 1 day, 1 week, 2 weeks, 1 month, 3 months and 6 months. After your vision has stabilized and your 6 months check up is completed without any issues, you can expect to make annual visits for a full eye exam and Ortho-K lens check.
What are the Risks of Orthokeratology?
The risks associated with Ortho-K are minimal and very similar to those associated with regular RGP lens wear including:
- Corneal Distortion
- Dry Eyeglasses
- Mild Abrasions
- Eye Irritation
How Long Will My Ortho-K Lenses Last?
If you follow the care instructions given by our eye doctor, you can expect your Ortho-K lenses to last anywhere from 2 to 3 years. However, if the lenses are not cared for properly or your prescription changes, you may need to replace them more frequently.
Silicon Valley Eye Physicians
Silicon Valley Eye Physicians is a leading vision care provider that has been serving the community for over 60 years. Our doctors are members of prestigious organizations, including:
- The American Academy of Ophthalmology
- The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology
- The Cornea Society
- The California Optometric Association
We are happy to conduct examinations and make diagnoses over the phone using our telemedicine service. To schedule in-person exams for your entire family, call our Sunnyvale office at (408) 739-6200 or request an appointment online.