What is Orthokeratology (Ortho-K)?
Ortho-K is a non-surgical procedure using specially designed contact lenses to reshape the front part of your eye (cornea) gently while you sleep. By wearing these lenses overnight, you will be able to see clearly without your glasses or contact lenses during the day!
Ortho-K is safe for children when appropriately fitted and managed by an experienced optometrist. Many individuals can eliminate their dependence upon their glasses and standard contact lenses with no adverse effects. Unlike surgical procedures, the cornea tissue is not incised or vaporized by a laser. The state-of-the-art, high Gas Permeable materials provide adequate amounts of oxygen to the tissues of the eye.
How Does it Work?
Ortho-K contact lenses are designed to gently reshape the central surface of the cornea systematically, similar to the effect of lasers in correcting Myopia. However, unlike laser surgery, the effect of ortho-k treatment is temporary and reversible. Re-fitting of new lenses is required if an individual’s eye degree changes.
It generally requires four to seven consecutive nights of wearing the Ortho-K lenses to achieve the desired result but for those with higher degree myopia, a longer period is needed. The duration will be determined on an individual basis by the eye care practitioner.
Is everyone, including children, a good candidate for Ortho-K?
Ortho-K can help most individuals (including those with certain types and amounts of astigmatism and high myopia) improve their vision.
The success rate of Ortho-K may be affected for people with very high prescription, large pupil size, cornea rigidity, irregular cornea and cornea disorder such as keratoconus. A thorough consultation and examination using advanced diagnostic instrumentation can easily determine if Ortho-K is right for an individual.
This treatment is non-surgical, thus is suitable for children too. Based on scientific research, the success rate is highest when children start as early as possible. Surprisingly, children can handle these special contact lenses much better than what adults thought they could. Most of them can independently manage everything by themselves within the first month!
What to expect on your first visit with us?
Detail assessment of your child’s myopia risk profile, environmental factors, and eye status to determine suitable treatment options.
Series of clinical procedures conducted to determine how well your child sees and the eye coordination status.
Results will be shared with the recommended clinical management plans. We will customise the treatment plan based on suitability for your reference before we proceed.
Why are we concerned?
Myopia in Singapore is among the highest in the world 80% of children in Singapore are myopic by the age of 18. Myopia, also known as ‘short-sightedness’, is the inability to see things clearly unless they are close to your eyes.
It is the most common eye condition among Singaporeans caused by genetic and environmental factors. The risk of myopia includes retinal detachment, cataracts, glaucoma, and myopic maculopathy, which will lead to blindness. The risk of Myopic Maculopathy increases by 40 times when the myopia is above -6.00.
Contact lenses cannot become lost behind the eye and it is rare for Ortho-K lenses to become decentered from the cornea. The complications of wearing contact lenses include cornea in-growth of blood vessels, ulcers, and abrasions. However, risks can be eliminated or reduced significantly with proper care and regular follow-up with our optometrists. Having the parents/guardian monitoring their child/ward using Ortho-K is extremely important.