About Keratoconus:

Keratoconus is when the surface of the eye bulges out in a cone shape. This happens when the front layer of the eye (the cornea) starts to thin. At first, the bulge may be mild but the condition can get worse over time. It normally affects both eyes.

Causes:

The cause of keratoconus is not known.

Risk Factors:

  • Family history of keratoconus
  • Rubbing your eyes
  • Conditions like retinitis pigmentosa, Down syndrome, hay fever, and asthma

Keratoconus affects about 1 in every 2000 Indians. It is most common in teenagers and young adults in their mid-teens and 20s.

The symptoms of the Keratoconus are:

  • Blurry vision
  • More sensitive to light and glare
  • Frequent changes in spectacle power
  • Sudden cloudy vision
Blurry vision
Glare or double vision
Changes in spectacle power
Cloudy Vision

One sign of the disease is a bulging cornea. This bulge causes near-sightedness and astigmatisms. In more serious cases, it can also cause swelling and scarring of the eye tissue. See an eye doctor if you have any sudden changes in your eyesight.

Picture Courtesy: American Academy of Ophthalmology

In the early stages, vision can be corrected with spectacles.

In later stages, an individually-fitted hard contact lens must be used. This lens gives better vision. However, it can also increase your sensitivity to light and glare. Finding a comfortable lens can be difficult, but it is important that the lens fit well. Poorly fitting lenses can damage the cornea even more.

If you cannot wear contact lenses or have corneal scarring, your doctor may suggest a cornea transplant.

Another option is corneal cross-linking (also called C3-R). This treatment is new and non-invasive. It works by increasing the strength of the cornea. This may not fix the existing bulge, but it can stop it from getting worse.