FAQs for ocularists

Pioneering 3D printing for people living with eye loss

Our breakthrough solution marks a pivotal moment in empowering clinicians to prioritise patient care. We’re committed to providing and improving technology to deliver a superior prosthetic that is designed to be realistic, natural, and comfortable. What sets us apart is that we use a non-invasive method using imaging software, rather than the traditional method of using a mould.

By harnessing new technology, aesthetics are improved and it brings the prosthetic manufacturing time down by months. This time-saving technology allows you to devote more time guiding your patients through the emotional and practical aspects of eye loss, fostering understanding and acceptance. Our approach is collaborative, working closely with clinicians and patients to create prosthetics that empower and enrich the lives of everyone involved. Learn more about ocular prosthetics below:

You’ll need a minimum of five years’ experience of ocularistry. Plus, you’ll need computer literacy skills and ideally some 3D modelling experience.

Yes. Training is mandatory to use the C2P tool. Training modules are available from your ocularist training body. Please get in contact with us if you are unsure of who your ocularist training body is.

Future opportunities for the digital ocularist certainly exist. This is a good time to learn ocularistry for the 21st century as C2P is a disruptive technology that has greatly impacted the ocularist industry in the past 12 months. The genie is now out of the bottle and early adopters are seeing the benefits of C2P. The ocularist industry methods have remained consistent for the last 80 years – both the production of the cryolite glass blowing technique and the production of acrylic eyes.

  • At least x4 manufacturing efficiency gain.
  • Consistent colour accuracy.
  • Improved patient satisfaction.
  • Improved job satisfaction.
  • Improved profit margin.
  • You’ll learn new skills.

C2P ocular prosthetics biomimic the fellow eye, recreating the shape of the iris in the prosthetic. This is instead of the traditional hand painting on an iris disk and lensing and touching up to create the illusion of depth. The C2P process replicates the actual shape of your patient’s iris. The pupil is a hole and the ridges and furrows created by the sphincter and radial muscles of the iris are recreated like a shallow volcano (image). Colour data is then mapped to match the surface terrain.

Light is reflected in and out of the prosthetic similar to match the fellow eye, giving a very realistic appearance. Specular highlights in the prosthesis match that of the fellow eye. Getting the twinkle in the eye back is often difficult to achieve with the handmade process. Colour reproduction of the fellow eye is processed digitally to achieve a consistent colour accuracy. The patient is imaged in controlled lighting conditions and printed with Cuttlefish ICC profile.

Click2Print AE is a digital end to end design and manufacturing process for ocular prostheses. It is a three-stage process.

1Click – The first stage of the design of the ocular prosthesis involves capturing the unique patient data required to design a bespoke prosthesis. Following an initial consultation with your ocularist and fitment of a custom conformer, the patient is required to present to a medical device via a chin rest and head support.

The device is an anterior segment OCT that measures the front of the eye. A scan of the eye socket is captured with the custom conformer in situ which takes three seconds. The custom conformer is removed then next a colour calibrated image and scan of the fellow eye is captured. This takes three seconds. A dataset is then ready for processing.

2 – The second stage is the design of the ocular prosthesis.

The unique patient dataset is processed through a software medical device called Cuttlefish:Eye. The software generates three bespoke prosthetics unique in colour and shape designed for you.

The colour of each prosthesis is identical however the shape varies slightly between each model. Your ocularist will fit each shape and select the best fit for fine tuning and supply. Alternatively, in complex socket shapes a combination of shape and fellow eye data can be combined to produce an output.

3 Print – The final stage is that the machine code is sent in batches to a full colour polyjet 3D printer for production. Up to 41 patient datasets can be printed in one batch. Print time is about three hours per batch. After printing, the prosthetics go through a series of post processing steps and quality checks. A set of prosthetics is then dispatched to the dispensing clinic for fitting and final adjustment.

C2P Artificial Eyes is a series medical device production system that operates to ISO 13485 medical device standards.

The initial scan of the eye socket and fellow eye takes about 30 minutes. C2P ocular prosthetics are printed in batches on a 3D printer. Up to 41 patients can be printed in one batch. Each batch can take up to three hours to print, printing three slightly different shaped prosthetics to suit each patient.

After printing the prosthetics need to be post processed ready for fitting. Turnaround times depend on batch frequency and the target delivery from click to fit is three weeks.

Absolutely not! C2P AE is a tool that has been developed over six years to aid the ocularist of the 21st century to design and manufacture ocular prosthetics. The C2P process currently designs and manufactures artificial eyes and not scleral shells. Not all patients are suitable for C2P.

Whilst most patients are suitable for the C2P process, patients with nystagmus (twitch), strabismus (squint) or damage to the iris are not suitable for C2P. It takes three seconds to image the eye or socket, and the patient and patient’s eye must remain still for that period of examination time. The C2P tool is for use by experienced ocularists only. Novice use is not recommended as empirical socket knowledge and experience in fitting and adjustment of prosthetics is a necessary skill set required to use the C2P tool.

The C2P process creates three bespoke prosthetics per patient. Currently the C2P process is available on the NHS via Moorfields Eye Hospital. From the first quarter of 2024, the C2P process will be available for adoption in the following regions: UK, NI, Eire, Scotland, Wales, EU, USA, Canada, India, Australia and the Middle East.

To talk about opportunities in adopting the C2P service in your region, please contact us.

  • Access to a Tomey Casia 2 AS-OCT machine (needs to have a colour camera)
  • Computer (minimum windows 10)
  • Set of Ocular Conformers
  • Licence for Cuttlefish:Eye.
  • Model scanner capable of producing .obj files e.g. Medit T500.
  • A darkroom to image the patient (light proof).

Not yet! 3D printing in silicone is always improving though so watch this space…

You can make thick scleral shells and we have test printed scleral shells as thin as 1.25mm. However cosmesis failed. Currently you can use the shape of a scleral shell and combine it with a scan and image of the fellow eye to produce an output. This may be an option if achieving colour accuracy is a problem.

The bespoke design of C2P prosthetics incorporates many different socket shapes. A database of eye shapes has been used to train the software that helps to design the output shape. Outliers shapes that are seldom seen are excluded from the training set; these outlier shapes are better managed on an individual basis. A combination of moulding technique and scan of the fellow eye can be adopted in complex socket cases to provide both shape complexity and colour accuracy.

It can be any patient requiring an artificial eye that can present to an AS-OCT.

C2P AE is a tool that has been developed over six years to aid the ocularist of the 21st century that designs and manufactures ocular prosthetics. The tool is designed to be used by experienced ocularists (with a minimum of five years ocularistry experience) to improve their workflow efficiencies and provide greater realism for the patient.

This is only the beginning of this revolutionary technology. Ocupeye has only just scratched the surface of the capabilities of digital ocularistry. As machine and material technology improve ocular prosthetics will advance to the next level.