The cornea is a clear dome over the colored part of our eyes. We use the cornea to help focus light rays through the pupil and the lens on to the retina (the back wall of the eye connected to our brain).
What is keratoconus?
Keratoconus is a degenerative disorder of a cornea that causes it to progressively thin out and lose its round shape causing distorted and reduced vision. The condition usually manifests itself in late teens or early twenties. It is usually progressive over two to three decades of a person’s life. In early stages it can be corrected with glasses or soft contact lenses. As it progresses, toric lenses and eventually rigid gas permeable contact lenses are required. Advanced Keratoconus requires surgical intervention. For more information about Keratoconus, visit The National Keratoconus Foundation or The Global Keratoconus Foundation.
What causes keratoconus?
Keratoconus is believed to be hereditary (“weakened” collagen fibers). A positive family history increases the risk of developing this disease. It is also more common in people with allergic conjunctivitis, connective tissue disorder or individuals suffering from Downs syndrome. Frequent, forceful eye rubbing is also associated with an increased risk of developing Keratoconus.
What are the symptoms of keratoconus?
The most common symptoms of Keratoconus include: blurred vision, ghost images, glare and light sensitivity.
How do you diagnose keratoconus?
Keratoconus can be diagnosed through a detailed eye examination, which should include corneal imaging (Topography).
How can keratoconus be treated?
Medical treatment options:
- toric or rigid gas permeable contact lenses.
Surgical treatment options:
- Intra-corneal rings (Intacs)
- Collagen Cross-Linking (FDA approved Avedro KXL system)
- Cornea Transplantation
If you suffer from Keratoconus and would like to be evaluated please contact The Princeton Eye Group at (609) 921-9437 and request a Cornea Consultation with Dr. Anita Miedziak.
Additional information in regards to keratoconus and corneal ectasia can be found at the following websites:
- Alliance for Eye and Vision Research – www.eyeresearch.org
- Cornea Research Foundation of America – www.cornea.org
- National Keratoconus Foundation – www.nkcf.org
- NIH: National Eye Institute – www.nei.nih.gov
- Prevent Blindness – www.preventblindness.org
- The Discovery Eye Foundation – www.discoveryeye.org
- The Global Keratoconus Foundation – www.kcglobal.org