Paragon CRT

Updated on May 31, 2011
L.C. asks from Corte Madera, CA
9 answers

My 13 yr old daughter is near-sighted and has worn glasses since 2nd grade and soft daily wear contact lenses since 6th grade. Her vision is getting progressively worse (probably due to genetics -- my vision got to be around -12.5 diopters). She has to get a new prescription at least every 6 months, sometime sooner.
I'm wondering about Paragon CRT that corrects vision with special hard lenses worn at night. She's about a 5 (I think that's -5 diopters) and the optometrist says 6 is tops for this procedure to work.
Does anyone have expterience with CRT? The cost is $1400 for the 1st year and about $230 the following year. I'm not sure if this is worth the effort and money.

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answers from San Francisco on

I don't often hear of people with vision worse than mine (-9.0 with astigmatism). I've worn glasses since 2nd grade and still recall the wonderment of the first time they put the glasses upon my face and actually SEEING the world.

I looked into this for myself and my eye care professionals have advised to not buy into it. And, my vision insurance does not cover it.

I may be a special scenario because of the astigmatism or because I have an incomplete blink - my lids don't meet completely so I need to use drops more frequently when I wear contacts. I've been advised the method is not proven and will reverse if I ever stopped wearing them, even for a few days or a week. I'm also not a candidate for the surgery to permanently fix my vision, not sure how that correlates to this either.

I'd advise getting a second opinion from another eye care professional in case this eye care professional is financially invested in people signing up for this.



answers from San Francisco on

I have tried the CRT lenses, and I would never recommend them to anyone. In total, I used them for about 6 months, and spent $1000. For the first 2-3 months, they were great. I wore them at night, and had 20/20 vision during the day with no contacts/glasses. Then the problems began. The lenses stopped fitting my eyes correctly, and the optometrist never seemed to be able to correct the fit (even though he insisted he could). The lenses became extremely painful to wear, and would actually be sticking to my eyes in the morning. You have to use a special suction device to remove them, which is very uncomfortable and painful. My eyes became extremely dry and irritated. The optometrist then had me wearing them during the day when these problems started, which defeats the purpose. They were still very uncomfortable, and I became worried about eye damage, so I just stopped them entirely.

When you think about how they work, it's quite disturbing. The lenses are reshaping your cornea, like a splint for your eye. I don't think there are any long term studies on the effects of this "corneal manipulation" and certainly would never expose a child to this risk.

I was seen by an optometrist (not an ophthalmologist), which may have been the problem. No ophthalmologist I have seen since has recommended CRT, all agreeing that they don't really work. Luckily, it was confirmed that I had no eye damage from the short trial that I used CRT. Now I wear soft contact dailies. I would recommend waiting and getting lasik (that's my plan now). It improves every year, and will only get better by the time your child is a young adult. It's a short sacrifice with using contacts/glasses to preserve eye health. I hope my experience can save others money.



answers from San Francisco on

Hi L.

I had a strange experience with my daughter's vision. Its not he same situation you are talking about, but f you looking for leads ....

She is in 3rd grade, and had double vision, and her brain did not images together properly. I was told she should see a 'Vision Therapist' because the glasses she needed to wear would be so thick on the outside, that would even get thicker in eyars ot come.

So I saw an eye doctor who is a vision therapist, and with exercises, her vision is way better than ever before, and she has need of glasses.

So, if you indeed want a second opinion from an experienced source, you could do much worse than see this guy. Dr Colin Kageyama in Campbell. I had never ever heard of vision therapy before, and though that glasses cold correct all vision problems. How wrong 5 was.




answers from San Francisco on

While I have had no experience with Paragon CRT lenses, I've had 57 years experience with glasses, soft lenses and gas permeable hard lenses. I began wearing glasses in 4th grade and moved on to hard lenses at age 13. Due to a misfit of lenses by my physician, I was forced to switch to soft lenses at age 23 and wore soft lenses for several years, then switched back to glasses. During the time I wore soft lenses and glasses my vision changed every 6-8 months, which drove me crazy (and I also needed bifocals at this point). About 6 years ago, my doctor suggested I give the hard lenses another try since my eyes had no signs of damage from my earlier experience. I love them and I see perfectly, though needing over the counter reading glasses for close up. My vision is slightly better than 20/20 for distance which is what I wanted. My prescription has not changed in 6 years. I've been wearing the sames hard lenses for all of those years. If you take really good care of them, they last a long time and only cost around $200. In all my years wearing contacts, I've only actually lost a hard lense once, at West Valley College, on the lawn at the age of 19. Since the lense doesn't allow the eye to change shape (which is one reason why vision worsens), vision can be maintained for a long time. You may wish to consider this option, which is a lot less expensive. At least talk to your daughter's doctor about it.



answers from Bakersfield on

Hi, my son has been using CRT lens for about 2 years now and he loves them. The only problem he has ever had is when staying the night at friends. Because once you put them in you must be ready to go to sleep, you can't see anything. We have fixed that problem. When you first start to use the lens you have to wear them every night. After his last Dr. appt. they his schedule he now wears them every other night.
I find the cost is well worth it. No more worries about him losing a lens or braking his glasses. I hope this help!
Good Luck
N. D.



answers from New York on

Late answering, but worth putting in comment for people searching. Ortho-K max effectiveness is about -6 diopters with up to 1.5 diopters of astigmatism. Additionally, growing body of research shows that it retards the progression of nearsightedness (myopia) for growing kids. Search SMART Study and CRAYON study for reference.



answers from Sacramento on

I don't have any experience with them yet, but I'm considering them for myself. I'll be interested to see what responses you get.



answers from Abilene on

My story is a lot like Kristi M, except I tried longer. I have been trying to wearing CRTs since 03/07/05. I had to go through several pairs to get even close to correcting myopia using monovision. I went on with the same pair going in every week then every other week, I was still making regular visits on 7/11/06 next annual eye exam. I still had problems seeing while driving and couldn't read fine print. I had to wear my glasses to pass the eye exam even with the form stating I had CRT. In Feb '06 I was put on medications which he said caused drying of my eyes. He recommended I use Systain eye drops during the D., Genteal gel at night along with a prescription of Restasis. I continued telling him I had trouble seeing distances (couldn't read road signs) & it was still difficult to read small print despite the fact in the office setting my sight was acceptable, he said "let's just give it some time". Everyone knows we don't have the same lighting or situations as in the office. Okay, I gave it time. My next eye exam 11/24/08 (got lost somehow & didn't get '07's). I paid for a new pair of CRT's, he said it was because my eyes had changed with age (turned 50 in Feb 2010). I tried telling him I was seeing the exact way as when I initially received them. Here we go again. The 1st or 2nd pair worked pretty good but still some blurring, so he recalculated & gave me the pair I have now. I still have to use my glasses when I drive or even want to watch tv & cheaters to read. I am very frustrated. I want so much to be free of glasses & contacts. Checking their FAQs I see where I should be able to see while wearing the CRT, but I can't. Another thing I was wearing them 9 hours nightly but now I only wear a max of 8 hours nightly (min 8 max up to 10 hrs). I continue to use all wetting solutions & even have a bottle of Systain by bed so when I wake at night I can put in a couple of drops.



answers from Philadelphia on

My 70 year old mother (whose prescription was so strong I couldn't see through her glasses), 50 year old sister (also horrible vision), 20 year old niece and 16 year old son all use the Paragon CRT lenses with great success. For my niece and son, the need was vision correction that did not involve day lenses (both goalies - not a place for lenses) while they were too young to be candidates for laser surgery. For my son, the added benefit was that starting at 13, his lenses wouldn't leave the house and their care could be supervised. While I am sure that they are not for everyone, these lenses have been fantastic for us. As a very active family, the wearing of lenses at night creates a great deal of freedom during the day. The one issue my mother has had is a need for eye moisturizing drops since her eyes are dryer than optimum for CRT use.

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