Keratoconus may result in significant visual impairment, but Dwight Thibodeaux, OD, and Paul Tachau, OD, at Accent Vision Specialists have experience in treating this condition to prevent the disorder from having a huge effect on your daily life. To receive testing and the most cutting-edge treatments for keratoconus, call the Santa Fe, New Mexico, office to schedule an appointment today.
Keratonocus Q & A
What is keratoconus?
Keratoconus is a vision disorder where your cornea, the round, clear front part of your eye, becomes thin and cone-shaped.
As keratoconus gets worse, it causes blurred vision that can’t be completely corrected through the use of glasses. It also causes increased sensitivity to light, a sudden change in your eyeglass prescription, or sudden cloudiness in your vision.
There is no known cause for keratoconus, but studies suggest that it’s due to environmental and genetic factors.
Overexposure to damaging sunlight, rubbing your eyes too much, and airborne allergies that cause irritation and even more eye rubbing are all environmental factors that increase your chances of keratoconus.
Studies show a one in 10 chance of patients developing keratoconus if a family member has had it already. Some researchers also believe that it’s caused by hormonal shifts in your body because many cases develop during puberty when the body is going through a lot of changes.
How is keratoconus treated?
Your doctor asks questions to get a detailed personal and family medical history and does an eye exam. They also do certain tests specially designed to test for keratoconus such as:
Using a vertical beam of light and a microscope, your doctor assesses the shape of your cornea.
Measuring the thickness and shape of your cornea using a computer to map and photograph your eye.
Based on the results of your testing, your doctor prescribes treatments to address your particular case of keratoconus.
Your treatment depends on how severe your keratoconus is and how quickly it’s progressing. For mild to moderate/stable keratoconus, your doctor prescribes glasses or contact lenses that help you see.
In worsening cases, your doctor can also recommend corneal cross-linking therapy, which uses ultraviolet light and vitamin A to stabilize your cornea and prevent further vision loss.
If your case is advanced and your doctor sees corneal scarring that can’t be helped by corrective lenses, your provider can suggest surgery to restore your cornea to its normal shape or replace it entirely.
If you are experiencing unexplained deteriorating vision, call Accent Vision Specialists to schedule an appointment today.