Can I wear contact lenses?

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sutts
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Can I wear contact lenses?

Postby sutts » Sat 08 Jul 2023 11:21 am

Hi all! I think I last posted here about 12 years ago, so not exactly a regular. :P

I had full grafts some 33 and 32 years ago. My right eye is good still, but the left is deteriorating with regards to vision. I have been to the optician and there are no corrections that he can do to make it better with my glasses. I have asked at my yearly check-ups at the hospital if I can wear contact lenses and the specialist always just says 'no'. He's not rude, he just doesn't see it as an option. I think he bases that on prior experience of such requests, so I never challenge it.

My question is, do people wear contact lenses on this site after a full graft and what is or was the outcome?

What about sleral lenses? Would they be an option?

My concern is that the right eye will also deteriorate and I will have to stop driving. Obviously I would like to avoid that if at all possible.

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Anne Klepacz
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Re: Can I wear contact lenses?

Postby Anne Klepacz » Sat 08 Jul 2023 2:41 pm

Welcome back, Sutts. I've looked back on this forum and you were asking a similar question back in 2012! So it's great that you've had good vision with spectacles all this time. Grafts can sometimes change shape over time so that probably explains why you now can't get the same good vision. And yes, lots of people wear contact lenses after grafts. Of course, we're all different, and there may be something about your eyes that would make fitting lenses difficult. But if your consultant is saying 'no' because of other people's experience rather than your particular case, then if your hospital has a contact lens department, I'd be asking for a referral to the optometrists there. They will be able to assess whether contact lenses would improve things for you and what sort of lens would be best.

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gsward
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Re: Can I wear contact lenses?

Postby gsward » Sat 08 Jul 2023 3:56 pm

Not sure if you are being seen by the ophthalmic department of a general hospital or a specialist eye hospital?

As Anne has said many of us have worn lenses over the top of a graft. Most lens types are possible, but I know that at Moorfields the preferred choice is a scleral lens as they vault over the top of the graft line. It may be that it is the fitting experience of the optometrists that is steering the advice you are getting.

It is possible to change hospital if that's what you need and it's not usual for your needs to change over time as both you(!) and your grafts age.

sutts
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Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
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Re: Can I wear contact lenses?

Postby sutts » Sat 08 Jul 2023 4:56 pm

Hi both! I don't go to a specialist eye hospital, just my local one. I don't think they have a contact lens dept, but as I see the specialist next week, I really should be pushing for a contact lens in at least my left eye.

I was told on my last visit that there is also a cataract forming in the left eye and that this is 'complicated' and not as straightforward as for non-graft patients.

It's hard to believe that I was asking this 12 years ago and I am still asking! I guess I could always go against his advice, but I am not sure that is the best thing, especially if it all goes wrong and I damage the eye or the graft.

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Re: Can I wear contact lenses?

Postby gsward » Sat 08 Jul 2023 5:10 pm

I had a cataract develop after my first graft (which is not uncommon), this was removed about 12 months after the graft. My other eye already had an early cataract before my graft. In that case the second cataract was removed 12 weeks after the graft operation. It can be done safely by an experienced surgeon. There may be additional risks with an older graft. A cataract of course is not going to get better and the visual benefit after the operation is huge.

I think there are two ways to move you to a specialist hospital, either your existing hospital could refer you or you can ask your GP to make you a new referral. If you give us a clue as to where you are located we may be able to point you towards a suitable hospital.

sutts
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Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
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Re: Can I wear contact lenses?

Postby sutts » Sat 08 Jul 2023 5:26 pm

I'm in Norfolk, on the coast.

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Anne Klepacz
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Re: Can I wear contact lenses?

Postby Anne Klepacz » Mon 10 Jul 2023 9:34 am

Hi Sutts,
According to Google, both King's Lynn and Norwich eye clinics have optometrists though that doesn't tell me whether they actually provide lenses with their own contact lens department. East Anglia doesn't have a lot of eye clinics, but the nearest alternative would be Addenbrookes in Cambridge. And we've certainly had members who've travelled to Moorfields in London for their keratoconus. Let us know what happens at your hospital visit this week.

sutts
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Posts: 14
Joined: Wed 31 Oct 2012 9:34 pm
Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
Vision: Graft(s) and spectacles

Re: Can I wear contact lenses?

Postby sutts » Mon 17 Jul 2023 6:12 pm

Well, the appointment went well! The consultant explained well what was going on. I have, as I already knew, the beginnings of cataracts, but they are not affecting the vision too much right now and he says that they don't need doing yet. He went on to explain that the vision in the left eye is being made worse by a ridge that has appeared around the graft as the original tissue has pushed forward again, as per the original keratoconus. He said that this obviously makes the astigmatism that I have, worse. I asked about contact lenses, and he said that because of the ridge, it would be uncomfortable and difficult, not to mention the possibility of infections.

So, I asked about scleral lenses and he said yes, much to my surprise. I asked for a referral and again he said yes! I should get an appointment within a few weeks and I am really happy with that!

Sorry for the non-technical reply, but I am not an expert on grafts or eyes!

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gsward
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Re: Can I wear contact lenses?

Postby gsward » Mon 17 Jul 2023 7:40 pm

That's brilliant news. I am pleased for you it has worked out as you hoped. Keep us updated and do ask if you have any more questions.

Graham

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J_ZA
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Re: Can I wear contact lenses?

Postby J_ZA » Tue 25 Jul 2023 5:39 am

gsward wrote:I had a cataract develop after my first graft (which is not uncommon), this was removed about 12 months after the graft. My other eye already had an early cataract before my graft. In that case the second cataract was removed 12 weeks after the graft operation. It can be done safely by an experienced surgeon. There may be additional risks with an older graft. A cataract of course is not going to get better and the visual benefit after the operation is huge.

I think there are two ways to move you to a specialist hospital, either your existing hospital could refer you or you can ask your GP to make you a new referral. If you give us a clue as to where you are located we may be able to point you towards a suitable hospital.

Same here, they did a lens replacement and it's made a huge difference. I am wearing a big, gas-permeable hard lens in that eye, and have to use reading glasses.


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