A scleral lens sits on the sclera of the eye and vaults over the cornea, virtually eliminating friction and discomfort. This “dome” creates a new optical surface to replace the damaged cornea.
Moreover, the reservoir of saline solution between the back the lens and the front of the cornea perpetually keeps the eye in a liquid environment, providing the ideal environment for ocular healing.
What Are The Advantages Of Wearing
Scleral Lenses Provide More Comfort and Improved Vision
Scleral lenses, larger in diameter than traditional lenses, spread their weight over a much greater, less sensitive area of the eye. Because the lens sits firmly on the eye, it offers more stable vision than traditional lenses, making them superior for physical activity, but with far less irritation.
Moreover, scleral lenses are composed of highly breathable gas permeable material, which ensures that ample oxygen reaches the eye, leading to healthy eyes and comfortable lens wear. Furthermore, the large size of the lens protects your eyes from debris, dust, and allergens, providing a perfect solution for those suffering from eye allergies.
How Many Types of Scleral Lenses Are There?
Scleral Lenses are The Gold Standard of Contact Lens Comfort And Can Work for Just About Anyone
- Corneo-scleral lenses and semi-scleral lenses are much larger than typical GP lenses and rest right by the junction between the cornea and the sclera.
- Mini-scleral lensesvault over the whole corneal surface and rest on the anterior sclera.
- Full scleral lenses are the biggest in size and offer the most clearance between the back of the lens and the cornea.
Scleral lenses provide greater durability, easier handling and a lower risk for complications. The Scleral Contact Lens Center at Turner Eye Institute has a wide range of custom scleral contact solutions that can work for you.
Who are Scleral Lenses For?
Anyone desiring to achieve the best vision with contact lenses is a great candidate for scleral lenses.
Scleral lenses are particularly helpful in managing the following conditions:
Keratoconus: Those with Keratoconus (keh-rah-toe-cone-us), an eye disorder in which the round dome-shaped cornea progressively thins and causes a cone-like bulge to develop, can massively benefit from wearing scleral lenses. Their irregular, cone-shaped corneas cannot be properly corrected using glasses or traditional contact lenses. Scleral lenses are therefore the ideal solution. They sit on the sclera without touching the cornea, while providing sharpness, clarity and comfort in vision.
Post-corneal transplant : A corneal transplant replaces diseased or scarred corneal tissue with a healthy cornea donated by a local eye bank. However, following a transplant, the cornea can become irregular and astigmatic. Scleral lenses are the safest and most comfortable way to correct for irregular astigmatism. Furthermore, following a corneal transplant, no part of the cornea should be touched with a contact lens. Scleral lenses are ideal in this case, as they vault over the cornea without touching it directly.
Dry Eyes:Those with Dry Eye Syndrome may find traditional contact lenses difficult to wear. However, given that scleral lenses contain a tear reservoir between the back of the lens and cornea, the front surface of the eye remains moist and comfortable all day long. This makes scleral lenses a great choice for Dry Eyes.
Hard-to-fit eyes: Patients with an irregularly shaped cornea, whether due to natural causes, an eye condition (i.e. keratoconus), or complications following surgery (such as LASIK), can at times develop vision problems which cannot be corrected using glasses or soft contact lenses. In such cases, scleral lenses provide a more comfortable, secure fit, and improved vision.
Scleral lenses also help manage the following eye conditions:
- Giant papillary conjunctivitis (GPC)
- Post-refractive surgery (i.e. LASIK, PRK)
Dr. Chirag R. Patel and the caring and knowledgeable staff at Scleral Contact Lens Center at Turner Eye Institute provide advanced custom contact lens fitting for even the most hard-to-fit-patients.
Does Insurance Cover Scleral Lenses?
When it comes to scleral lenses, every insurance company is different. Some cover the examination and custom fitting, but not the actual lenses. Others may cover a portion of the cost or 100% of the cost, but only if other treatment methods have been exhausted. It’s important that you check with your specific insurance provider to understand the particulars of your scleral lens coverage.
If you are interested in seeing whether scleral lenses are right for you, make sure that the eye doctor you visit has the knowledge and experience required to correctly fit you for the lenses. Scleral lenses require precise customization, and every patient’s case varies in degrees of severity and corneal measurements.
Get advanced contact lens fittings by Dr. Chirag R. Patel at The Scleral Contact Lens Center at Turner Eye Institute. We serve patients from San Leandro, Concord, Castro Valley, Alameda and throughout California.