What is CK?
Conductive Keratoplasty (CK) is the first non-laser procedure for baby boomers who have had clear vision all their life, but now struggle to see life's details with glasses.
Conductive Keratoplasty (CK) can help restore your vision, allowing you to see clearly like you could 10 years ago.; It's an exciting new advancement in vision correction because it uses radiofrequency (RF) energy instead of a laser to treat your vision problem.
How CK Works
Conductive Keratoplasty (CK) is a quick procedure with no cutting involved. You don't even have to go to an outpatient surgery center. In just three minutes, a doctor can perform CK in his or her office.
CK can change how the eye focuses light by reshaping the surface of your eye (cornea). When the shape is changed, light can be refocused on the correct part of your eye (retina). To produce this reshaping, CK uses the controlled release of RF energy to heat and shrink corneal tissue. This steepens the cornea and allows light to properly focus on the retina again.
What to expect during a CK procedure
Once your doctor has determined that you are a candidate for CK, your cornea will be mapped to determine its current and individual shape.This will be used to plan the procedure and measure results.
After the procedure, you may elect to wear dark glasses. There is generally no need to wear a patch. As with other vision procedures, you may experience some discomfort and light sensitivity for a few days.
Are you a candidate for CK?
3 key questions to ask:
If you meet the above criteria, call to schedule a consultation.
Conductive Keratoplasty (CK) permanent?
With CK we will be able to “turn back the hands of time…but we cannot stop the clock from ticking.” We will be able to take you back to the time where you just started relying on glasses for reading a menu in dim lighting and up close work. As you age, so do your eyes. The effect of CK is permanent but as we age our vision continues to weaken.
Can CK correct presbyopia?
If you have presbyopia, one of our doctors may recommend “blended vision”. Unlike “monovision”, (where one eye is treated for near vision, leaving the untreated eye for distance vision), blended vision improves your ability to focus on near objects without sacrificing all of your distance vision in the treated eye. This makes it easier for you to adjust to the two separate images. If you have not tolerated monovision treatments in the past, blended vision may be a better choice.
Will I ever need glasses or contacts again?
The vast majority of patients do not need corrective lenses of any kind after the CK procedure. However, depending on your age and the type of refractive disorder you have, you may need additional vision correction (surgery, reading glasses, or bifocals) at some point. This is because your eyes continue to change as you age.
Is CK reversible?
As with most vision correction procedures, CK is not reversible. Once the procedure has been performed, it is not possible to “remove” the effects of the procedure. This is an important factor that anyone thinking about surgery should carefully consider. To make sure CK is right for you, make sure you discuss your vision needs with our surgeon.
Will my vision improve immediately after surgery?
Patients usually notice an immediate improvement in their vision after the CK procedure. However, it usually takes several weeks for the eyes to reach the final level of correction.
What are the risks and side effects of CK?
Because CK is minimally invasive and very controlled, the procedure has very few surgical complications. During the first 24 to 48 hours after surgery, you may experience tearing and some discomfort, including a foreign-object sensation in the eyes. You may also experience a slight over-correction of your vision, allowing you to see better up close, though your distance vision may be blurry. This will stabilize during the following weeks.
Will my vision fluctuate after the procedure is performed?
Most patients will experience mild fluctuation in their vision after surgery, but many will never notice it. Any fluctuation will usually subside within a few weeks. Patients who undergo vision procedures for farsightedness usually require a longer stabilization period than those treated for nearsightedness.
How soon will I be able to return to work?
With CK, the majority of patients are able to return to work and other normal activities 1-3 days after their procedure. Although recovery is fairly quick, it is advisable to be careful with your eyes and avoid any strain. Those whose jobs demand intense clarity of vision (such as dentistry, surgery, or computer work) may find their work more difficult to perform for several days after having the procedure.
Are both eyes corrected on the same day?
For patients who require treatment in both eyes, CK is typically performed on both eyes on the same day – one eye immediately after the other. Most patients are comfortable having both eyes corrected on the same day because CK is minimally invasive and requires only a few minutes to perform.
Why doesn't CK use a laser?
Lasers reshape the cornea by vaporizing (removing) tissue. CK reshapes the cornea using an entirely different method: the application of low-level, radiofrequency (RF) energy to specific spots around the cornea. This causes the tissue of the cornea (collagen) to shrink in a very controlled way, creating a constrictive “band” that gives the cornea a steeper shape.
Can CK correct myopia (nearsightedness)?
CK is intended to steepen the cornea; this is needed to help with near vision. CK is not designed to flatten the cornea, the effect required for the correction of myopia.
What will I feel during the procedure?
CK is considered painless. You will be aware of a lid support, which helps to hold your eye open. The most common sensation that patients experience is a feeling of pressure on the eye. After surgery, there may be some mild discomfort. Many patients complain of a foreign-object sensation or a slight “scratchiness” in the eye. This usually subsides within 24-48 hours of the procedure.
Are there restrictions after having CK?
As with any other types of vision procedure, certain precautions should be taken after CK. You should avoid getting contaminated water in your eyes for at least one week. This includes water from swimming pools, spas, lakes, and the ocean. When showering or taking baths, you should keep your eyes closed to avoid getting soap and dirty water in them. Also, you should avoid rubbing your eyes vigorously for two weeks following the procedure. Eye makeup should not be used for few days after surgery.
Will the instrument used in the CK procedure penetrate my cornea?
The small, pen-shaped instrument used to apply radiofrequency (RF) energy does penetrate the cornea (approximately 0.45 mm or less than 1/50 of an inch). The actual penetrating tip (KeratoplastÔ Tip) is as thin as a human hair. It also has a specially designed stop to eliminate the risk of penetrating the cornea too deeply.
Will I have to wear patches over my eyes after the procedure?
You will not have to wear patches or bandages. However, your eyes may be scratchy and light sensitive for the first 24-48 hours. Wearing good sunglasses and keeping your eyes closed as much as possible will ease these symptoms.
Will my health insurance cover the cost of the procedure?
Because CK is elective surgery, most health insurance plans do not cover it.