Keratoconus Treatment


What Happens In Keratoconus

Cornea is the clear transparent part of your eye which is responsible for focusing light accurately onto your retina. Normally in cross section, our corneas are shaped like footballs [spherical] or sometimes like rugby balls [cylindrical]. However, in a condition called as Keratoconus, the cornea becomes very steep, thin and irregular and bulge outward like a cone.

This condition prevents the irregular cornea from properly focusing the light onto the retina, thereby reducing the vision. Left untreated, the cornea progressively thins out to a point of severe irregularity. This extreme thinning also leads to loss of structural integrity of the cornea, and leads to ingress of water into the corneal fibres, thereby reducing the transparency of the cornea.

Keratoconus Treatment


Keratoconus usually affects teenagers and young adults

Causes of Keratoconus

Causes Of Keratoconus

Firstly we must understand, the eye is composed of layers and keratoconus is a condition that deteriorates the cornea and its shape. Even though its not very clear on the underlying causes for Keratoconus, it is assumed to be the following:

  • Right ArrowFamily history
  • Right ArrowAge factor
  • Right ArrowUnderlying disorders like asthma, sleep apnea, down syndrome, etc
  • Right ArrowEnvironmental risk factors like eye rubbing, contact lenses and more.

Your doctor will take you through the slit lamp exam to examine your eye under a special light for magnification.


Treatment Options

Currently there is no treatment option to reverse the thinning of the cornea in keratoconus. However, it is important to arrest the progression of this condition which can lead to dreadful complications if left unchecked.

Riboflavin assisted Corneal Collagen Cross-linking [C3R]

C3R procedure is safe and effective method to prevent the progress of keratoconus. In this treatment, Riboflavin dye is used to soak the corneal fibres. Once the dye is soaked into the cornea, precise UV light is irradiated onto the cornea. This strengthens the corneal fibres by the interlinking covalent bonds and thus strengthens the cornea. This procedure arrests the progression of keratoconus

Once the keratoconus is stabilized after C3R procedure, visual rehabilitation with glasses, contact lenses or phakic IOLs are required to restore vision.

Riboflavin Corneal Collagen Cross Linking Treatment
Keratoplasty Lamellar Penetrating

Keratoplasty: Lamellar [DALK] or Penetrating

This treatment involves removal of the host’s diseased cornea and grafting a healthy cornea from a donor. The keratoplasty procedures are only reserved for those eyes wherein keratoconus is so advanced that C3R procedure is not possible or contraindicated.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Keratoconus? Faq Icon

Keratoconus, is a condition where the cornea becomes very steep, thin and irregular and bulge outward like a cone. This condition prevents the irregular cornea from properly focusing the light onto the retina, thereby reducing the vision

What are the symptoms of keratoconus?? Faq Icon

Symptoms of keratoconus include

  • Right ArrowFrequent change of glasses
  • Right ArrowHeadaches
  • Right ArrowVision not correcting completely even with glasses
What is the usual age of onset of keratoconus? How fast does it progress? Faq Icon

It may occur in people from teenages to even 40 years or more. IEven though its diagnosed earlier, it may gradually grow and stabilize.

Does keratoconus affect both eyes? Faq Icon

Yes, it does affect both the eyes in the majority of the cases.

What are the treatment options available? Faq Icon
  • Right ArrowRiboflavin assisted Corneal Collagen Cross-linking [C3R]
  • Right ArrowKeratoplasty: Lamellar [DALK] or Penetrating
Can Keratoconus Go Away On Its Own? Faq Icon

The answer is No. Keratocomus doesn’t fade on its own. The shape of your cornea can't change, without medications, contact lenses or even surgery.

Can Keratoconus Cause Dry Eye? Faq Icon

Yes, there is a high chance because your eyes lose the ability to spread tears over your uneven cornea.

Does Keratoconus Cause Eye Pain? Faq Icon

In some cases your eyes will ache due to the keratoconus. Eye irritation is common accompanied with some mere pain.

What Do I Do If I Think I Have Keratoconus? Faq Icon

Consult your doctor immediately and get your eyes checked. And Based on the consultation and prescription choose your lenses or even surgery in severe cases.

What about relatives of people with keratoconus? Faq Icon

In those cases, one copy of the altered gene in each cell may cause the disorder. Usually, it is not inherited. But there are rare cases which can be seen too.

Can I undergo LASIK correction for keratoconus? Faq Icon

Absolutely not! Keratoconus is the number one contraindication for LASIK procedure as LASIK reshapes the cornea by thinning out the central cornea. Since the cornea is already weak, irregular and thin in keratoconus, further thinning out the cornea would have disastrous effects.