What is Clarivu?
Clarivu is the brand name for Optegra’s individualised surgical vision correction package. It involves replacement of the lenses in the eye and is an alternative to laser eye surgery which has become particularly popular with people over the age of 50 who want to permanently correct their short or long sightedness. It can also be used to prevent or remove cataracts, and if a cataract is removed using this treatment, no future cataract surgery is required. It can also be used to treat patients whose vision is affected by astigmatism.
Clarivu is a proven technology which has been performed many thousands of times across the UK. Indeed, after completion, around 93% of patients no longer need to wear glasses at all.
Who Can Have the Treatment?
Clairvu is suitable for people who use glasses or contact lenses to correct either long or short-sightedness and who want to regain permanently clear vision. It’s particularly popular with those over 50 as the aging eye responds less well to traditional laser eye surgery and Clarivu offers an alternative method of achieving the same results.
Suitability for Clarivu will be determined on an individual basis and prospective patients will have to attend a detailed consultation of around 90 minutes so the surgeon can be sure the surgery will be of benefit.
If you have had laser surgery previously, you can still have Clarivu, but you may be restricted in the range of lenses you can choose from.
Suffers of glaucoma will not be considered suitable for this procedure.
The Clarivu Procedure
Prior to the surgery being carried out, patients will receive anaesthetic eye drops in the eye to be treated. The surgeon will then remove the lens from your eye and replace it with an artificial intraocular lens. The lenses are made from medical grade silicone or acrylic and are manufactured to fit your own prescription. (For this reason, there is usually a waiting time of around two weeks from the date of consultation to surgery to allow the lenses to be made.)
Replacement of the lens takes around 20 minutes to complete, after which patients are required to rest in the clinic until they feel ready to leave. Generally, people leave within an hour of the surgery being complete. Full vision is typically restored within 48-72 hours.
Most people are able to go back to work after three days unless they work in a particularly dusty environment, in which case they will require up to two weeks off. Patients will be provided with eye drops to aid recovery and are advised to avoid contact sports for a couple of weeks. Some discomfort and itching is normal after the operation but this usually disappears within a couple of days.
Around 7 days after surgery, the consultant will arrange a follow up appointment to ensure the healing process is progressing properly. Many patients will experience glare at night after the operation but this tends to resolve itself within 6 weeks.
Benefits of Clarivu
There are a number of benefits to patients who opt for a Clarivu procedure including; improved colour vision, clearer vision, a permanent solution to vision problems including cataracts, and tailor made lenses. In addition, the process is very swift, taking under half an hour in total.
Of course, it must be remembered that all surgery comes with risks and the procedure does carry a small risk of infection (around 0.01%). Also, around 7% of users still need to wear glasses occasionally.
Cost of Clarivu
The initial consultation for prospective patients is free but if you decide to go ahead with the procedure it costs £3,500 per eye. However, Optegra do offer loans to help people spread the cost of treatment, with repayments ranging from £160 – £290 per month depending on the length of the agreement.
Clarivu generally isn’t covered by medical insurance but if you are having cataract surgery and want to upgrade to Clarivu, then insurers may cover a percentage of the treatment cost.
Where Can I Have Clarivu?
There are Optegra treatment centers located across the UK in London, Manchester, Yorkshire, Surrey and Solent. Most offer open evenings at least once a month to allow people to find out more about the procedure before committing to a consultation.