Keratoconus occurs when the cornea becomes thin and slowly bulges outward into a cone-like shape. This results in blurry vision and may cause sensitivity to light. This condition usually begins around puberty and slowly progresses into the mid-30s.
The symptoms of keratoconus may change over time as the disease progresses, and include:
- Blurry or distorted vision.
- An increased sensitivity to light.
- Sudden worsening of vision.
- Eye irritation and/or headaches.
- Frequent changes in eyeglass prescriptions.
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The exact cause of keratoconus is not completely understood, though it is believed that it may be present at birth. There are certain factors that may increase your risk for developing this disease including genetics, chronic eye inflammation, chronic eye rubbing, and age.
In order to diagnose this condition, Dr. Gupta will perform an eye exam in our office. She may also choose to perform other tests such as an eye refraction test, slit-lamp examination, keratometry, or computerized corneal mapping in order to correctly diagnose your condition.
The treatment for keratoconus is dependent on the severity of your symptoms and how quickly the condition is progressing. Generally, treatment options can be determined depending on the stage of your disease.
Early Stages: In the early stages of keratoconus, treatment commonly involves eyeglasses to treat nearsightedness and astigmatism.
Middle Stages: As keratoconus progresses, corneal collagen cross-linking is an option to prevent vision from worsening, and sometimes, improve vision. This is an in-office procedure that involves applying a vitamin B solution to the eye, which is then activated by ultraviolet light. This process causes new collagen bonds to develop, preserving the shape and strength of the cornea.
Late Stages: If your keratoconus is in the advanced stages, a corneal transplant is often necessary. A cornea transplant removes either the entire or partial thickness of the diseased cornea and replaces it with healthy donor tissue. There are a number of different surgical methods to achieve this, which Dr. Gupta will discuss with you prior to surgery. In most cases, glasses or contact lenses are needed to provide optimal vision after a corneal transplant.
If you are experiencing the symptoms associated with keratoconus, do not hesitate to contact Advanced Eye Surgeons today. We will be more than happy to schedule your eye exam appointment with Dr. Gupta, which is your first step toward treatment.
If you have a question or would like to schedule an appointment, please fill out and submit the form below.
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