Keratoconus is a condition in which the cornea of the eye gradually thins and begins to bulge outward and become cone-shaped. This leads to progressive vision impairment, including blurred vision and increased sensitivity to glare and light. As keratoconus progresses, it can become difficult to read, drive, or perform other simple tasks. The condition affects an estimated 1 in 2,000 people. Most people with keratoconus are diagnosed in their teenage years or 20s. The condition often progresses for up to 20 years before finally stabilizing around middle age.
One of the latest methods for diagnosing keratoconus involves corneal topography mapping. This test can be performed by our eye doctors. Corneal topography mapping measures the thickness of the cornea and creates a detailed map of the surface of the eye. This technology also makes it possible to categorize the severity of the disease.
Treatments for Keratoconus:
Early-stage keratoconus is typically treated with soft contacts or glasses. Frequent prescription altercations may be needed as the disease progresses. The contacts may also need to be switched from soft to rigid gas permeable to ensure adequate vision correction. Recent developments in contact lens technology have made the treatment of keratoconus a bit easier, specifically Scleral Contact Lenses. Scleral Contact Lenses cover the entire corneal service and rest on the sclera of the eye. Due to this larger form factor, they provide a more stable fit on the eye.
It is also important to note that advanced keratoconus may require surgical treatment. One surgical option involves inserting crescent-shaped rings into the cornea to correct its shape and improve vision. In cases where there is extensive corneal scarring and thinning, a corneal transplant, also known as a keratoplasty, may be required. This procedure replaces the damaged cornea with a cornea from a healthy donor.
At Performance Eyecare, we are committed to the early detection of different eye diseases by offering our patients the latest in diagnostic technology, including corneal topography and scleral contact lens fitting. Contact us today for more information or to schedule an appointment. We have eye care locations in Creve Coeur, MO as well as Swansea, IL, and Alton, Illinois.