What Is Keratoconus?
Keratoconus is an eye disease characterized by a progressive thinning of the eye's cornea - the clear outer covering of the eye. If not treated, this disease can lead to vision loss. In most cases, it is diagnosed in young people in their late teens and keeps progressing in their mid-30s. The changes in the cornea might occur quickly, or it may take years for the disease to develop.
In the early stage of the disease, there are the following symptoms:
- Eye swelling or redness
- Increased sensitivity to light
- Distorted vision, where straight lines may look wavy or bent
- Blurred vision.
After some time, other symptoms appear, such as:
- Increased astigmatism (when eyes cannot focus properly)
- Not being able to wear contact lenses anymore (wearing them becomes uncomfortable)
- More distorted vision.
Usually, it takes a year for this disease to develop. However, there are cases, when the cornea swells suddenly, and the eye disease starts progressing very quickly.
Diagnosis And Treatment
Today doctors use several different tests to diagnose this eye disorder. The most common and widely used test is called topography. It allows the measure of curvature in the cornea and creates its colored map.
Treatment of the disorder depends on the severity of the condition and how quickly the disease is progressing. Typically, there are two approaches: to slow the progression and improve the vision.
In order to slow or stop its progression, there is a method in ophthalmology and pediatric eye care called corneal cross linking. It is one of the newest and most innovative treatments that help to prevent patients from needing cornea transplantation in the future. However, corneal cross linking cannot reverse the disease or improve the vision.
To those patients who want to improve their vision, doctors prescribe scleral lenses. They have a larger diameter and are designed specifically to vault over the whole surface of the cornea. Scleral lenses are great and sometimes the only solution for patients suffering from this disease. By improving the vision, they also improve patients' quality of life.
Arvada Optometric Center - Optometry That You Can Trust
Our center located in Arvada, CO is more than just another eye clinic. Our professional and knowledgeable staff specializing in optometry, ophthalmology and pediatric eye care always provide professional and high-quality care to our patients of all ages. We ensure the satisfaction and comfort of each patient. If you noticed that your vision became worse and you have noticed the symptoms of keratoconus, do not wait and call us immediately to schedule an appointment with one of our specialists.