Conductive keratoplasty (CK) is a non-laser refractive surgery procedure that can correct between +0.75 and +3.00 D of hyperopia (farsightedness). CK received U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval in April 2002.
Though CK can correct hyperopia, the effect is often not permanent. CK is currently used primarily to temporarily improve the near vision of presbyopic individuals over the age of 40, and is commonly referred to as "NearVision CK."
NearVision CK is an in-office procedure that your refractive surgeon can perform in less than 5 minutes. The surgeon first applies a topical anesthetic (eye drops) to the eye, then uses a hand-held probe to deliver radio frequency (RF) energy to several points in the periphery of the cornea. (The tip of the probe is as thin as a strand of human hair.) For this reason, you should not undergo this procedure if you use a pacemaker, as the radio frequency equipment can interfere with the operation of the device.
The CK treatment steepens the cornea to either improve distance vision (in the case of treatment for hyperopia) or near vision (in the treatment of presbyopia). Reading vision tends to improve about a week after the NearVision CK procedure.
When NearVision CK is performed to improve the near vision of people over age 40 with presbyopia (who can see well in the distance without eyeglasses), CK is generally performed on one eye only to provide a monovision correction the untreated eye is used for distance vision and the NearVision CK treated eye is used for near vision.
As with monovision provided with LASIK, PRK or other refractive surgery procedures, you may still need reading glasses for certain tasks, but for most daily activities, NearVision CK can help you see acceptably well without glasses.