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The Advantages of Ortho-K

Promising Alternative to LASIK

Myopia, or “nearsightedness,” has always been a disadvantage for people. Whether it is eyeglasses or contact lenses, it is such a nuisance trying to have corrected vision each day.


Forgetting to bring glasses when going to school, worrying about losing a contact lens when playing soccer, it’s such a hassle! It’s unclear what the actual cause of myopia is, but it seems that genetics plays an important role. We can’t really prevent ourselves from getting glasses; you either need them or you don’t. Although some adults choose to have laser eye surgery (LASIK), the results are mixed and usually entail a whole list of side effects depending on the individual. And of course, LASIK is not suitable for children and teens.

But what if we can do something that is not permanent to the eye but temporarily restores one’s vision so that regular corrective lenses would not be needed? Thanks to years of research, advances in technology and materials engineering, and a number of NASA Space Shuttle missions, this is now possible using orthokeratology.

Orthokeratology (Ortho-k for short) is the use of rigid, highly oxygen-permeable contact lenses to gently and temporarily adjust the shape of the cornea to provide better, crisper vision. In other words, one would wear these lenses for a period of time, take them off, and enjoy clear vision without the aid of additional glasses or contact lenses. These lenses look like any other ordinary contact lenses, except that they are hard and smaller. The rigid structure of the lenses provides a means for adjusting the cornea’s surface curvature, which is the ultimate goal of the treatment. Ortho-k lenses have an even higher degree of oxygen-permeability compared to regular contact lenses, which allow the eyes to breathe during treatment to maintain good eye health and avoid hypoxia during sleep, when treatment takes place.

Source: technophilicmag


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