Treatments for dry eye disease go far beyond artificial tears. Scleral lenses are one of the treatments we provide at our Vancouver dry eye clinic. They can be effective for dry eye as well as presbyopia and astigmatism.
Scleral lenses are large contact lenses that extend to the sclera of the eye. They are rigid and are custom designed according to the unique topography and physiology of your eye. Even though they are rigid, they are extremely comfortable and well tolerated by the vast majority of patients. The doctor will usually need to conduct various medical imaging procedures in order to properly design and fit the lens.
Studies have shown that scleral contact lenses have resulted in a significant improvement of visual acuity and successfully created a moist atmosphere in front of the cornea of the eye. They protect the surface of the eye and provide continuous hydration to the cornea. And they do all this while providing clear vision and replacing your glasses or regular contact lenses. Scleral lenses can even be used in conjunction with other dry eye therapies.
Scleral lenses have even been used to successfully treat severe dry eye resulting from chronic graft-versus-host disease, with the majority of patients reporting improved pain levels, improved light sensitivity, improvement in quality of life and improvement in reading and driving: Jacobs & Rosenthal. Cornea. 2007, December 26 : 1195–9.