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Dry Eye Center

Keratoconus & Specialty Contacts
Low Vision Care

We’ve moved to a new location12911 120th Ave NE G105, Kirkland, WA 98034. We are conveniently located across the street from the Evergreen Health Center ER and north of the new Village at Totem Lake, Totem Lake Boulevard. Look for the blue Pro Ortho sign, building G.

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Dry Eye Center Keratoconus & Specialty Contacts Low Vision Care

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Scleral Contact Lens In Seattle

Scleral Lenses: Revolutionary Contact Lens Technology Providing Incredible Comfort And Visual Clarity

Dr. Ross Cusic provides advanced contact lens fitting at Specialty Contact Lens Center At Optical Images serving patients from Seattle , Bellingham , Olympia, Vancouver

What Are The Advantages Of Scleral Lenses? It’s All In The Shape

What Are Scleral Lenses?

Scleral lenses are specialized custom contact lenses that make contact lens use possible for many people for the first time - and they have many advantages over normal contact lenses as well including, fit, comfort, and visual acuity.

A scleral lens gets its name because it sits on the sclera, or the white part of the eye, rather than the iris (the colored part of the eye). Because a scleral lens sits on the sclera, it stays off the more sensitive areas of the eye. Friction and discomfort are virtually eliminated.

Scleral Lenses Are More Wearable And Protect Your Eyes Better

The vaulted dome design of scleral lenses offers unique advantages over traditional contact lens design. Scleral lenses move around much less than regular contacts, making them superior for physical activity, with far less irritation.

The vaulted dome shape of a scleral lens provides a smooth replacement corneal surface, improving vision for people with corneal scarring or corneal irregularities due to LASIK eye surgery complications, Keratoconus, or other eye conditions.

The design of the lens creates a pocket of space between the eye and the lens. The lens is filled with lubricating saline solution before insertion, providing hydration and comfort all day long.
The size of the lens means that your eyes are more protected from debris, dust, and other allergens, making it a good solution for someone that also suffers from eye allergies.

Enjoy Better Vision

Scleral lenses also provide unparalleled visual acuity by replacing the damaged cornea with a perfect optical surface. Its larger design means the lens is firmly in place, which further enhances vision when compared to traditional lenses. Due to their size and shape,  scleral lenses provide greater durability, easier handling and a lower risk for complications. The Specialty Contact Lens Center At Optical Images has a wide range of custom scleral contact solutions that can work for you.

Have You Been Told You Are Not A Candidate For Contacts?

Have you tried all the latest contact lenses, but you are forced to wear glasses as you suffered too much discomfort? Is your vision decreasing due to Keratoconus or other corneal conditions?

Thousands of people who suffer vision loss as a result of various corneal conditions (listed below) can now see clearly once again. Scleral lenses are changing the game for those who once thought they couldn’t wear contact lens due to eye conditions or discomfort. Say goodbye to the old days of contact lenses that didn’t work for you. You no longer have to suffer discomfort or simply being forced to live with poor vision. At Specialty Contact Lens Center At Optical Images, Dr. Ross Cusic, provides advanced custom contact lens fitting for even the most hard-to-fit-patients.

Scleral Lenses For Keratoconus And Other Eye Conditions

Because of the unique shape and comfort of scleral lenses, they are an ideal solution for people with the following eye conditions:

  • Keratoconus
  • Severe Dry Eyes
  • Post-refractive surgical complications
  • Post LASIK eye surgery complications
  • Post RK eye surgery complications
  • Post PRK eye surgery complications
  • Severe astigmatism
  • Stevens-Johnson Syndrome
  • Trauma to the cornea
  • Corneal ectasia,
  • Sjogren's Syndrome
  • Post Corneal Graft
  • Irregular Cornea
  • Severe Dry Eye
  • Ocular Pemphigoid
  • Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis (GPC)
  • Rarer conditions include:
  • Map-dot-fingerprint
  • dystrophy,
  • Basal membrane dystrophy,
  • Meesman's dystrophy,
  • Reis-Bückler's Granular dystrophy,
  • Thiel-Benke's dystrophy,
  • Macular dystrophy

Because of the unique shape and comfort of scleral lenses, they are an ideal solution for people with certain eye conditions:

Following Eye Conditions Are:
  • Keratoconus
  • Severe Dry Eyes
  • Post-refractive surgical complications
  • Post LASIK eye surgery complications
  • Post RK eye surgery complications
  • Post PRK eye surgery complications
  • Severe astigmatism
  • Stevens-Johnson Syndrome
  • Trauma to the cornea
  • Corneal ectasia,
  • Sjogren's Syndrome
  • Post Corneal Graft
  • Irregular Cornea
  • Severe Dry Eye
  • Ocular Pemphigoid
  • Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis (GPC)
  • Rarer conditions include:
  • Map-dot-fingerprint
  • dystrophy,
  • Basal membrane dystrophy,
  • Meesman's dystrophy,
  • Reis-Bückler's Granular dystrophy,
  • Thiel-Benke's dystrophy,
  • Macular dystrophy
Male Serious Eyes

Scleral Lenses For Keratoconus And Other Eye Conditions

The clear tissue on the eye’s outermost surface covering the pupil and the iris, is called the cornea. Mainly, the cornea’s function is to bend and focus light going into the eyes. Normally, the cornea has a smooth shape. When the shape of the cornea becomes irregular, the light entering the eyes is not focused properly. Consequently, an individual will suffer distorted and irregular vision.

Keratoconus is a condition of the cornea that affects between .1% to .5% of the population, or 300 thousand to 1.6 million Americans. Keratoconus causes severe vision loss and discomfort, and is effectively corrected with scleral contact lenses. The Specialty Contact Lens Center At Optical Images provides advanced eye care for keratoconus patients from all over the state of Washington including many patients from Seattle ,Bellingham ,Olympia, and Vancouver.

Our eye doctor has helped many patients that were legally blind due to corneal scarring, regain excellent vision after being properly fit with Scleral Lenses.

Athlete's, law enforcement, construction workers, actors, and others are great candidates for scleral lenses. Because of their large diameter, scleral lenses protect the eye by preventing dirt and debris, do not move when active.

People suffering from severe dry eye can find therapeutic benefits from transitioning to custom designed scleral lenses. Sclerals keep the cornea moisturized and protected while minimizing irritation to the eyelids and the rest of the eye.

Scleral lenses are extremely effective at correcting for higher amounts of astigmatism and irregular astigmatism. Because of their rigidity, they correct for astigmatism which allows for excellent vision even for people with high amounts of astigmatism.

Scleral contacts are an ideal option for anyone that has higher amounts of nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism. They can also be made as bifocal contact lenses. Because scleral contacts are firmly positioned on the eye and do not move as soft contact lenses do, they work well as bifocal contact lenses.

All scleral lenses rest on the white part of the eye, the sclera. The exact diameter and space between the cornea and sclera is determined by our optometrist, Dr. Ross Cusic, varying from a few millimeters away, called mini scleral lenses, to much larger full scleral contact lenses that are usually recommended on very irregular corneal surfaces.

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What Is The Cost Of Scleral Lenses? What Is The Process Of A Scleral Lens Fitting?

Unlike regular contact lenses, scleral lenses are custom fit to the eye, requiring significantly more training on the part of the optometrist, expensive equipment, and multiple visits to achieve the optimal fit. In addition to the fitting process, the patient must also be trained on how to properly care, insert, and remove scleral lenses. Because of these reasons, professional fees associated with fitting scleral lenses and lens replacement costs are higher than other contact lenses. We are happy to discuss your specific costs and payment options based on your individual needs.

Does Vision Or Medical Insurance Cover The Cost Of Scleral Lenses?

Scleral lenses are not automatically covered by vision or medical insurance, and while most vision insurances will reimburse for medically necessary contact lens, the rates and restrictions vary greatly from one vision insurance provider to the next. Depending on your plan, some of the costs associated with professional fitting or lenses may be covered. In general, medical insurance do not cover scleral lens fittings. Our insurance team will provide assistance in helping you apply any insurance benefits towards your Scleral Lenses. However, given that insurance policies vary widely we cannot guarantee how much coverage you will receive from your insurance.

Patients with Down Syndrome overwhelmingly require eye care, with 70% requiring glasses and 45% of people with down syndrome have strabismus, which is usually best treated by a Vision Therapy Optometrist. Furthermore, there are a variety of ocular diseases associated with Down Syndrome patients such as tear duct abnormalities that can lead to severe discomfort, keratoconus (misshapen cornea) and congenital cataracts. A patient with down syndrome will also require specialized glasses made for their unique facial features.

Dr. Ross Cusic fits custom scleral lenses that are designed to match the exact contours of your eye. We begin by using a topographer to digitally map out the exact dimensions and shape of your eye. We then make the sclerals to exactly match. This custom design provides the highest level of comfort and visual acuity, using microscopic adjustments with new advanced technology to customize the fit of each lens.

Our optometrist, Dr. Ross Cusic, has experience fitting a wide variety of contact lenses for all virtually every type of patient. Our professional eye doctor also uses some of the latest technology for advanced contact lens fitting.

Our inventory of diagnostic contact lenses enables our optometrist to examine, test and prescribe the most suitable lenses for your eye-care needs. Our patients are often deeply touched by the enormous sense of relief they feel when they are able to manage their keratoconus and other corneal conditions successfully without surgery.

Scleral Lenses are the Gold Standard Of Contact Lens Comfort and Work for Just about Anyone
Book a Scleral Lens Assessment Today

Young Woman Smiling

We Asked Five Patients About Their Experience With Scleral Lenses

How has your vision been since switching to scleral lenses? It has been very clear, a lot better than my soft contacts and lot more comfortable all day. My favorite thing is that I can tell that my vision is corrected as perfectly as it can.

How did your life change when you got scleral lenses? It changed dramatically, I am a traveling nurse, driving early morning and late at night. I can now drive at night and the lights don't bother me, It has helped me tremendously for my job. I have been wearing sclerals for over 3 years and I could never go back to regular hard contacts.

Tell us what your vision was like with your old contacts? I had 20/50 vision with contact lenses, and now I can see 20/25 and I have gone down on my reading glasses from 2.0 to 1.5. And the great part is I can’t even tell I have anything in my eyes. The biggest thing about sclerals is keeping them clean and taking care of them.

What is your history? I was a keratoconus patient, I first had a corneal transplant on one eye and then the other. Did you try contacts after corneal transplant? I did but after 2 hours they hurt too much. Tell me the difference in your vision? There are no words to articulate, when I look at people I see detail like never before, it is like night and day.

What is your vision history? In middle school I was diagnosed with Astigmatism and wore contact lenses, but in college I started having issues and was diagnosed as having the early stages Keratoconus. I went to a lot of eye doctors, tried a lot of contacts, and eventually I underwent corneal transplant. The surgery was not successful, and my vision remained as it was before surgery. Driving at night was no longer something that I could do because of blinding glare. Scleral Lenses literally changed my life, I didn’t know what I was missing.

Meet Our Scleral Lens Optometrist

Meet Our Scleral Lens Optometrist

Doctor Cusic photoDr. Ross Cusic has over 20 years of experience helping patients with Keratoconus, Dry Eyes, and Corneal Irregularities. His passion for helping others, combined with the new tools that allow for custom contact lenses, encouraged him to invest in the most sophisticated technology to provide help for patients with complex vision issues such as patients with severe dry eyes and Keratoconus.

More Information About Scleral Lenses

What If I am a hard to fit patient?

If you have a complicated contact lens fitting, visit our Kirkland practice, the leading Scleral Lens practice in the Seattle area. We fit for patients with: Keratoconus, Pellucid Marginal Degeneration (PMD), post-transplant, Presbyopia, Corneal Scarring, Contacts for Myopia Control and post-LASIK Ectasia.

Do Sclerals Help With Dry Eye

We specialize in contact lenses for patients who experience discomfort and dry eyes from contact lenses. Depending on the reason for your discomfort our Optometrist Dr. Cusic will recommend one of two options for dry eyes. The first option is daily disposables such as Dailies Total 1 which prevent irritating deposit build up, are ultra breathable, and integrate hydrating components into the design. The second option is Scleral Lenses, which are custom made contact lenses using the most advanced custom design, which retains moisture due to their unique design and reservoir as well as vault over the eye reducing friction from contact or movement.

Sclerals For Keratoconus

Keratoconus is a condition that can develop in the pre-teen years when the cornea starts to change its shape. Associated with these changes are extreme sensitivity to light or glare, blurry vision (like being unable to view the blackboard), and sudden decreases in vision. To get a better picture of Keratoconus, imagine that the top white surface of an eye having lots of ridges and bumps that would prevent a regular contact lens to rest on and adhere to the eye surface. These surface variations are unique to each individual, where some may be able to get by with contacts or glasses, while for others, hard lenses or scleral lenses are the preferred alternative.

Because of the irregular shape of the cornea, it is extremely important that a person with Keratoconus has accurate measurements including both a 3D map of the corneal and the thickness.

The challenge of keratoconus

The real challenge for patients with Keratoconus isn’t from a lack of alternatives but the constant change in prescriptions nearly every year. In certain cases of Keratoconus, the changes become so extreme that people turn to Corneal transplants.

For those living with Keratoconus, finding a knowledgeable and reliable optometrist with the latest technology is essential, especially since there are solutions for visual comfort that may come up short. Dr. Ross Cusic at Optical Images is one of the leaders in the Seattle area for fitting scleral lenses for Keratoconus patients and providing the desired comfort and clarity that’s not found anywhere else. People often visit Dr. Cusic for a second opinion about their Keratoconus or irregular corneas just to be sure that their current prescription is accurate.

Options for patients with Keratoconus

While hybrid contact lenses supply a better quality of vision for irregularly shaped eyes, the hard components used may not provide comfort for some. Patients could turn to scleral lenses, which are large gas permeable contact lenses that cover the entire corneal surface of the eye, ensuring greater comfort.

Fortunately, at our Seattle area practice, Dr. Cusic provides a variety of specialty contact lens treatments that can be custom tailored for nearly any case of Keratoconus, irregularly shaped corneas, or extreme astigmatisms. Through years of experience and a knowledgeable, caring staff, Optical Images provides the very best care for patients with Keratoconus in the Seattle Area. To receive the best fit possible for your eyes, schedule a consultation with us today.

Our Seattle Contact lens Center

Other Specialty Contact Lens Fittings In Seattle

Our practice specializes in custom contact lens fittings for a wide range of specialty contact lenses. This includes:

  • Gas permeable (GP) and rigid gas permeable (RGP) lenses
  • Multifocal contact lens fitting for presbyopia and myopia
  • Soft daily lenses for moderate dry eye, discomfort, and eye allergies
  • Scleral lenses for patients with keratoconus, corneal scarring, severe dry eyes, corneal transplants, and irregular astigmatism.

Our optometrist, Dr. Ross Cusic, has successfully helped many patients come from all over Washington including Seattle , Bellingham , Olympia, and Vancouver.

  • Scleral lenses are custom contact lenses that provide exceptional comfort and vision. Sclerals are the preferred choice for patients with Keratoconus, dry eye, or find contact lenses uncomfortable. Dr. Cusic is proud to have the most advanced technology for Scleral Lens Fitting in Seattle WA.