What is VST?
Vision Shaping Treatment uses specially designed vision retainers to gently and gradually reshape the front surface of the eye (the cornea) to eliminate or reduce nearsightedness (myopia) or astigmatism. The principle is similar to the use of a dental retainer used by an orthodontist to realign crooked teeth. The vision retainers are similar to contact lenses and are only worn at night while sleeping. They are then removed upon awakening to provide clear vision without using glasses or contact lenses! The retainers are comfortable and very easy to care for.
Why not just wear eyeglasses or contact lenses?
The main purpose of VST is to be free from both contact lenses and eyeglasses during waking hours. While this is ideal for sports enthusiasts or those who work in dusty or dirty environments, for others VST offers the appeal of being free from corrective lenses during the day. VST also offers relief from the problems sometimes associated with full time contact lens wear like drying and things getting on or under the lenses.
Does VST have any advantages over Laser Surgery?
There are several. VST is less than half the cost of Excimer Laser Surgery. It does not involve any post-operative pain. Also, the hazy post-operative vision that can be associated with laser surgery does not occur with VST. Both eyes can easily be done at the same time with VST. Also, prescription changes are easy to deal with using VST. There are no strong steroid or antibiotic drugs needed with VST as there are during the post-operative period for laser surgery. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, VST is reversible. Laser surgery is not.
Is everyone suitable for VST and can any doctor perform it?
The answer to both questions is no. It does not work on every patient and needs to be performed in a very exact and meticulous manner. Our doctor has received special training and has the necessary diagnostic equipment, computer software and expertise to perform VST.
The procedure works best on mild to moderate amounts of nearsightedness or astigmatism. More severe cases can have their vision improved, but will still need some vision correction. The procedure also does not work well on certain shaped corneas. Also, there are several unmeasurable factors for each patient – most notably the cornea’s rigidity. Thus the speed of VST varies with each patient. Generally, but not always, less nearsighted patients respond faster than more nearsighted ones. There are no age barriers for VST. It is safe for children and adults and is an excellent alternative for children who are just first becoming nearsighted as VST will prevent any further nearsightedness from occurring! Also, while success rates are very high, success cannot be guaranteed due to factors like the inability to wear the vision retainer for physiological reasons or other systemic health problems that may reduce wearing time.