What is Keratoconus?

Keratoconus is an eye disorder in which the cornea becomes misshapen, typically in a more conical than spherical shape. This change in shape can lead to double vision, distortion of vision, blurred or streaked vision and sensitivity to light.

In many patients, corrective lenses fitted by a specialist allow the patient to drive legally and function in daily life. If the disease continues to progress, one of several surgical options may be explored.

Surgical procedures for advanced Keratoconus include: intrastromal corneal ring segments, corneal collagen cross-linking, mini asymmetric radial keratotomy and, in 25% of cases, corneal transplantation.

Signs and Symptoms of Keratoconus

People with early keratoconus typically notice a minor blurring of their vision and come to their clinician seeking corrective lenses for reading or driving. During these stages the symptoms may be similar to those of any other refractive defect.

With the progression of the disease, eyesight deteriorates, sometimes very quickly. Visual sharpness becomes impaired both near and far, and night vision is typically bad. Some patients have markedly worse vision in one of their eyes.

In most cases keratoconus will affect both eyes, though not necessarily evenly. Some sufferers develop a sensitivity to bright light, eye strain from squinting in order to read, or itching in the eye, but there is normally little or no pain. It may cause lit objects to appear as pipe, all having the same brightness at all points.


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