What is Keratoconus Treatment?
Keratoconus Treatment is a progressive ectasia or thinning of the cornea, which is accompanied by an increase in the curvature, making it irregular and steep. The internal bonds linking the different layers of the cornea are weakened, due to genetic or inflammatory conditions.
How is it detected?
The cornea is mapped with the help of a specialized machine called Topography- which basically helps provide an idea of the contour of the cornea, with a highly precise point to point data on the curvature and thickness and different points on each cornea.
There are various types of Topographers and each provides different data.
Dr. Kareeshma did her thesis on Keratoconus and has worked for 3 years in this area.
What are the treatment options?
In the early stages, Keratoconus can be treated with glasses or contact lenses. If the shape is very irregular, a specialized contact lens called the “Rose-K” lens can be provided which is custom fit to the individual’s cornea. These are rigid lenses with varying diameters, to snugly fit on the area of conical protrusion, providing a new surface for clear vision.
When progression of the condition is documented, either on Topography or increase in spectacle powers, a laser treatment called C3R or CXL needs to be done. Corneal Collagen Cross-Linking with Riboflavin (C3R) is done under Ultraviolet- A light to increase the linkage between the collagen fibers of these keratoconic corneas. This treatment has been shown to halt the progression of the condition, though not reverse it.
After stabilization of such corneas, visual rehabilitation can be done with spectacles or Rose-K lenses.
In extremely advanced cases, where it is too late to cross-link such eyes, the patient may be advised a Cornea Transplant surgery. This will help remove and replace the damaged tissue with a normal one.