For people who struggle with quality vision due to corneal disease and even botched refractive surgery, scleral lenses can be profoundly life changing. These people can regain most of their eyesight function. They can work and see the world again with so much more clarity than ever before!
Scleral lenses are a very special, medically-necessary contact lens. They’re designed for patients who can’t wear regular glasses or your everyday contacts. These patients may be suffering from corneal disease, have undergone corneal transplants as a result or may simply have an irregular eye surface secondary to the disease or a botched refractive surgery. Whatever it may be, scleral lenses come to the rescue by providing a completely new refractive surface for the patient to look through.
What are scleral lenses?
First, scleral lenses are bigger lenses than most other types of contact lenses made. They are often larger in diameter than what you see with most soft contact lenses. But these lenses are “hard” and they are specially-fitted. They are made for each patient using a gas permeable material that allows oxygen to transmit through the lens to the corneal surface of the eye for it’s “O2 needs”.
Still trying to picture it? Imagine a regular cereal bowl filled with saline solution. Now, imagine that you look down into that bowl and pop it into your eye. As a lens, now your irregular eye surface has been nullified and evened out by the saline and scleral lens. The saline used in the scleral lenses cancels out the irregular surface for your eyes thereby giving the patient a totally new refractive surface to refract light! And besides that, the patient’s cornea now swims in saline, beneath the hard lens exterior for a comfortable well moistened eye.
These lenses work for about a year, sometimes longer. Over time, they can get warped and then new lenses must be reordered and re-fitted. As for maintenance, these lenses can be cleaned using specially concentrated peroxide solution (see manufacturer’s instructions on proper usage) and even regular hard gas permeable lens cleaners too.
Scleral lens fitting
The most critical thing with scleral lenses is the fitting. A good fitting ensures the lens is comfortable and that it sits properly on the eye. There are numerous variables to a lens fitting, often scleral lenses require numerous follow-ups to enable the user to see well and feel comfortable while wearing them.
For many wearers, scleral lenses have been an extraordinary enhancement to their vision. It’s important to see an experienced practitioner, someone who has expertise and substantial experience with scleral lens fittings.
Here at Carlsson Family Eye Center, we are dedicated to your vision and comfort. We use only the latest designs and materials for scleral lenses, and we ensure our patients have access to the most advanced technology and techniques to all their visual needs.
Our number one goal: to help patients regain their eyesight and quality of life so they all see, look and feel their best after visiting us!