Just wondering if anyone has ever considered or tryed CRT lenses? I saw some great old posts on the subject when I looked it up on this site. I know years ago when I could no longer stand my glasses, I briefly considered Lasik. That is, until I read the risks involved. There were just too many stories of complications for me personally to do it. Of course, I'm happy for anyone who has had Lasik done successfully. But I know I always wished someone had told me about CRT sooner. It's surprising how how many people have never heard of it. My own family doctor hadn't. I've had my CRT's for years now, and I absolutely LOVE them. I'd be happy to post more of my experiences if anyone has questions.
CRT stands for Corneal Refractive Therapy. It's a hard contact lens that you wear at night to basically change the shape of your cornea. You can find the descriptions of how it physically works if you look it up on Yahoo. In my personal experience it was no less then amazing. I had worn soft contacts (then glasses) since high school (I'm 26 now) and hated it tremendously. Soft contacts became impossible for me to wear, and then my glasses gave me headaches. And of course, as is usually the case, my prescription got progressively stronger. I was frustrated because I knew there must be a way to stop this cycle, but not even my eye doctor at the time told me about CRT. So I did some research myself and found out about CRT. I lucked out and found a great eye doc in my area who did it (and I live in a small town). So I really encourage people to look into it, even if they think there's no one in their area who does it. Ask around, you'd be surprised. It's just that laser docs get so much more publicity (bigger paycheck for those who do laser), so are more well known.
For the specifics. My prescription before CRT was -4.50 in each eye. My doc says he's done people with up to -8.00 sucessfully, but he likes to take on hard cases. Literally the next morning I was 20/20 and now on a good day I can get 20/15. The beauty of CRT is as long as you keep up with wearing your lenses at night, it stops the progression of the myopia! Oh how I wish I'd have known about this a long time ago. Unlike laser surgery, any problems are reversible. And of course, it's cheaper. I paid under $900 everything included (but keep in mind I live in a small town) and I know he has since raised his rates. Still worth it though.
i participated in a CRT study a LONG time ago, when doctors were still trying to find out if they did any good. the one thing i remember the most about it, was that once the lenses were in my eyes, i constantly felt like i had something in my eye! it was horrible! have they improved the lenses since then?
when you say you got yours for $900, what did you get? do you change out lenses every so often according to the changing in your eye, or does your eye slowly go back during the day so you wear the same lens each night? just curious....
That's cool! You were one of the original pioneers so to speak. I thank you for that To answer your question, yes, they have improved the lenses since then. I happen to be VERY sensitive to having anything in my eyes (thus the regular soft lenses not working out for me). I will say that at first it was a big adjustment. I could barely open my eyes at all with them in. I thought what did I get myself into? But the next morning when my vision was crystal clear...wow. It was all worth it. Then over time I was actually surprised at how much easier it became to wear them. For me now, I can tell they are in, but they aren't uncomfortable. I couldn't wear them during the day (although I know people who do wear hard lenses in the daytime) but then again, I don't have to.
The $900 was for everything. Original appointment with the corneal imaging (don't get alarmed it's just a picture of your eyeball. Takes 10 seconds). Lens fitting, lenses themselves, one week, one month and one year follow up appointments. Only one set of lenses. The corneal imaging is so precise now, it's all computerized. The doc makes your lenses from the image on the computer. Customized. He orders them from a lab and a few days later they arrive.
The length of time the lenses last really vary from person to person. They are hard lenses, so obviously they are more durable then soft ones. I've never ripped one. I got a back up pair just in case (at $150 per lens) but never had to use them. I've been doing CRT for three years now. On my last eye visit I got a new right lens made because sometimes things just "shift" a bit and you need to tweak the mold of the lens. (Sorry my terms are not the most medical Ask your eye doc for a better description). If this happens you'll just notice a slight decrease in visual acuity. Very minor. Like -50. This is NOT a change in your actual prescription. Just the lens needing to be adjusted. Your prescription shouldn't actually change once you regularly are doing CRT. That's the thing I love most about it. It stops the progression of the myopia.
No, there is no decrease in vision from morning till evening. For me anyway. I don't know how long I could go without wearing my lenses before a noticible difference. I've never wanted to try it!
Hope I answered everything you were looking for. Any other questions feel free to ask
thanks for all that! that is pretty cool! i participated in that study when i was in junior high, and i really had no idea what it was supposed to do at the time. my dad had been going out to see an eye doctor at the local university, and found out through them about the study and set it up for me.
i just HATED those lenses! i don't think i actually helped with their study much because i didn't wear the lenses as much as i should have - they just hurt too much! so glad it's all been improved since then!
My prescription is about -7.5 and I've worn CRT lenses for about a decade, ever since they just came on the scene before they were FDA approved. I'll give you a quick rundown of the pros and cons, but feel free to ask any additional questions.
-Nothing permanent, completely reversible
-No cutting, abrasing, sandblasting, or otherwise destruction of tissue
-90% of days I can see clear as day, 20/20
-Did I mention it's reversible? A HUGE plus for those nervous about surgery or any other permanent procedures.
-You have to wear RGP lenses EVERY night (at least for my prescription). Which means having to clean and insert them every night, remove and clean them every morning. Becomes a real pain because you can't just fall into bed if you're tired or run out the door if you're late in the morning. Makes camping trips difficult too (I have to transition to glasses for that).
-20% of the days you see sub-par (dirty lenses, bad night, etc.)
-You can't predict what days will be good or bad.
Those with lower prescriptions probably won't have as serious cons as I do. After 10 years, I'm starting to consider surgery, although stories of bad outcomes are still making me nervous. Although I agree CRT (also called Orthokeratology or Ortho-K) is a great option to consider.