Keratoconus is diagnosed in one out of every 2,000 Americans, making it one of the most common problems to affect your cornea. Keratoconus first develops in teens and young adults, which is different from many eye conditions associated with aging. The doctors at UltraVision have extensive experience developing customized treatment plans that help slow down the condition’s natural progression. If your vision becomes slightly blurry or distorted, call one of the offices in San Antonio or Eagle Pass, Texas, or book an appointment online.
Your cornea is the clear, dome-shaped layer covering the outside of your eye. It’s essential for vision because it bends light, perfectly focusing it on your retina. To properly bend light, the cornea must retain its normal shape.
Keratoconus is a condition in which your cornea gradually and progressively becomes thinner. The middle of the cornea bulges outward, forming a cone-like shape.
Although keratoconus usually affects both eyes, they may worsen at different rates. As a result, you can have different symptoms and vision changes in each eye.
In the early stage, when the cornea begins to bulge away from your eye, you may experience:
As the condition worsens, it causes nearsightedness or astigmatism. In most patients, keratoconus progresses slowly, but in some, it quickly deteriorates. The cornea may suddenly swell and develop scarring that further affects your vision.
When you have keratoconus, it’s important to never rub your eyes. Even gentle rubbing can damage the thin corneal tissue. If you have allergies, or your eyes become itchy for any reason, call your doctor at UltraVision for medication to relieve the itchiness.
During the early stage of keratoconus, you may only need eyeglasses to correct your vision. Your UltraVision doctor may also recommend special hard contact lenses. Other treatments include:
Intacs are small, crescent-shaped implants that are surgically placed around the edge of your cornea. Once they’re in place, they help flatten the cornea, which improves your vision. Intacs may also delay or slow disease progression.
Your doctor uses a UV light and eye drops to strengthen bonds in the cornea, which helps to halt progressive changes.
When your keratoconus is severe, your final option is to replace all or part of your cornea with a healthy cornea from a donor.
As soon as you notice any changes in your vision, call UltraVision or book an appointment online.