What is keratoconus?
Keratoconus is an eye condition in which the shape of the cornea becomes distorted. The cornea is a clear structure that covers the front of the eye and allows light to enter the eye. In a healthy eye, the cornea curves like a dome. In an eye with keratoconus, the center of the cornea slowly thins and bulges so that it sags and has a cone shape.
What causes keratoconus?
The cause of keratoconus is unknown.
What are the symptoms of keratoconus?
Keratoconus tends to affect younger people and the symptoms sometimes start in the early teen years and progresses most rapidly for the next 10 to 20 years. Often, eyeglass prescriptions must be changed frequently as the disease progresses.
- Difficulty driving at night
- Halo's and ghosting, especially at night
- Eye strain
- Headaches and general eye pain
- Eye irritation and excessive rubbing of the eye
How is keratoconus diagnosed?
Keratoconus can usually be diagnosed with a slit-lamp examination as well measurement of the corneal curvature. Your optometrist will look for signs such as corneal thinning, stress lines, and scarring at the apex of the corneal cone. Keratoconus, especially in the early stages, can be difficult to diagnose and its symptoms could be associated with other eye problems. Simply recognizing symptoms does not by itself diagnose the condition.
What is the treatment for keratoconus?
The primary treatment options for keratoconus have traditionally been contact lenses and surgery. In the very early stages of keratoconus, vision problems can be corrected with prescription glasses or contact lenses. As keratoconus progresses, special rigid gas permeable contact lenses may be necessary.
Collagen Cross-Linking is a new exciting treatment that has been shown to halt the progression of the keratoconic changes that happen in the cornea. By combining specially formulated Riboflavin and carefully engineered ultraviolet light therapy, patients with keratoconus finally have a treatment that has halt the disease, and may even improve their vision.
INTACS corneal inserts and Kera-rings are designed to help patients with keratoconus that have become contact lens intolerant. Clinical results have shown both improved lens free as well as lens-wearing vision improvement, and many patients do not necessarily go on to needing a corneal transplant.
Advanced keratoconus, with scarring and thinning of the corneal tissue may require surgery. A full thickness corneal transplant is often performed in a hospital setting, on an outpatient ambulatory basis. Surgery is usually less than an hour.
Please contact the office to make an appointment so that Dr Ehrenhaus can examine you and help advise you with the best options available for your individual needs.
Cornea ring segments for keratoconus placed with Femtosecond laser
LASIK Xtra procedure
Epithelium-on cornea collagen cross linking for keratoconus
Dr. Ehrenhaus using the latest Femtosecond Laser, designed by Zeimer (Swiss) to implant KERATACx Corneal Rings for Keratoconus and to create bladeless LASIK flaps.
The keratoconus patients implanted with Keratracx corneal ring implants were already noticing up to 2-3 lines of vision improvement without glasses or contacts the next day!
Corneal Rings implanted for Keratoconus
The patient had an easy uncomplicated recovery after the 10 minutes procedure and is already seeing better without his RGP lenses than with them!