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Corneal Refractive Therapy (CRT)

Many people want to correct their vision and reduce their dependence on eyeglasses or contact lenses, but not everyone is an ideal candidate for LASIK eye surgery. Corneal refractive therapy (CRT), or corneal reshaping, is a safe, non-surgical process that reshapes the surface of your eye during sleep using a specially designed contact lens.

What is Corneal Refractive Therapy?

CRT offers patients with moderate nearsightedness a new option for reducing their dependence on corrective lenses. This is a great option for those who have careers or hobbies in which wearing eyeglasses can become burdensome. Corneal refractive therapy is also prescribed in some cases in order to slow the progression of childhood nearsightedness.

The specially designed lenses are worn overnight, gently reshaping the eye, before being removed in the morning. The goal is to improve vision and reduce the need for eyeglasses or contacts during the waking hours. The reshaping of the eye produces similar results to LASIK, but no surgery is involved. The lenses must be worn each night during sleep as the effect of CRT is temporary.

How does the CRT process work?

First, an optometrist will measure the curvatures of the patient’s corneas. This procedure is quick and painless, allowing the eye doctor to create a map of the eye’s surface. Then the optometrist will fit the patient with specially designed CRT contact lenses. Not all optometry professionals fit these lenses, so it is important to speak with an eye doctor who specializes in fitting CRT lenses if you are interested in this therapy.

These lenses are especially designed for overnight wear, and the patient may need a series of temporary lenses to achieve the maximum effect of vision correction. The amount of time it takes to achieve this effect will depend on each individual’s level of nearsightedness. Most patients see significant improvement within 1-2 days of treatment and achieve optimal vision in about 10 to 14 days.

The CRT lenses should be disinfected with chemicals after every use and will generally need to be replaced every 2 to 3 years. Due to the temporary nature of the treatment, there is little risk involved with corneal refractive therapy. Patients can stop wearing the lenses at any time. However, their vision will return to its original state, sometimes in as few as 72 hours.

If you think that Corneal Refractive Therapy might be right for you, contact Crisp Vision Optometry today to make an appointment for a consultation with an experienced optometrist. With convenient locations in both Salinas, CA, and Monterrey, CA, our team is ready to take care of all your eye care needs.