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Introduction of Keratoconus | Causes, Symptoms of Keratoconus | Treatment

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Keratoconus is a corneal degenerative condition that causes it to flatten and swell into a cone-like form over time. The shape of the macula prevents light from concentrating exactly on it. The cone grows increasingly apparent as the condition develops, causing vision to become blurry and distorted.

Patients with keratoconus are frequently severely nearsighted and have a significant degree of astigmatism that cannot be corrected with glasses due to the uneven shape of the cornea. Keratoconus is a hereditary condition that affects both eyes.

Keratoconus is a corneal non-inflammatory condition with no recognized cause. It causes vision loss due to gradual corneal thinning and cone-shaped protrusion. Patients may have blurred vision or a drop in visual acuity.

Because of growing myopia and uneven astigmatism, corrective lenses can be difficult to fit and change often. Corrective lenses can help with vision problems at first, but in more severe cases, corneal cross-linking or penetrating keratoplasty may be necessary to avoid disease development.

What’s Keratoconus?


Keratoconus is a degenerative eye condition that causes the typically smooth cornea to weaken and swell into a cone shape. The cornea is the transparent center portion of the eye’s surface. The cone-shaped cornea of keratoconus sufferers refracts light improperly, resulting in impaired vision.

At this time, an etiology of keratoconus is unknown. Researchers have discovered that thinning of the cornea is caused by biochemical and cell biology problems. Although genetic anomalies have been suggested, there is no clear confirmation at this time.

Keratoconus has also been linked to eye rubbing, which has been linked to the development of keratoconus or the worsening of keratoconus.

Is keratoconus a common ailment?

Keratoconus is more frequent than previously assumed, according to research conducted 20 to 30 years ago. As diagnostic testing has improved, the estimated prevalence of keratoconus has been shown to be as high as one in every 375 people in certain studies.

Both eyes are ultimately afflicted in most patients with keratoconus, though not to the same extent. Although individuals with keratoconus are unlikely to go blind, the disease’s nature can cause vision to deteriorate to the point that everyday tasks like driving a car or reading a book become challenging.

Keratoconus might be a frightening concept, but our cornea specialists at Wolfe Eye Clinic have expertise managing and treating keratoconus and can answer your concerns about what to expect next.


Doctors are still stumped as to why keratoconus develops, despite the fact that it is linked to eye allergies and frequent rubbing of the eyes. The illness appears to be hereditary, with one out of every ten patients having a parent who also has it.

Keratoconus usually strikes people in their late teens or early twenties, with symptoms gradually deteriorating over the next 10 to 20 years.


Researchers are still trying to figure out why certain people acquire keratoconus. It develops for no obvious cause in the majority of instances. Both environmental and genetic variables are considered to have a role in its development.

Your ancestors

Some persons with keratoconus are considered to have genes that predispose them to developing the condition if they are exposed to specific environmental variables.

Disorders that lie under the surface

Keratoconus can arise in the context of certain underlying illnesses, although there is no clear link between the two. Down syndrome, sleep apnea, asthma, several connective tissue abnormalities such as Marfan syndrome and brittle cornea syndrome, and Lebar congenital amaurosis are among these conditions.

Risk factors associated with the environment

Excessive eye rubbing and contact lens usage are two environmental risk factors that may contribute to the development of keratoconus.

Risk Factors

Genetics may have a role in the development of keratoconus. Because vigorous eye rubbing is suspected to contribute to the disease’s growth and progression, people with keratoconus are recommended to avoid rubbing their eyes.

The following factors may enhance your chances of getting keratoconus:


Patients who have a family history of keratoconus or who have specific systemic illnesses, such as Down syndrome, are more likely to acquire the condition.

Inflammation of the eyes that is chronic

Constant inflammation caused by allergens or irritants can contribute to corneal tissue damage, which can lead to the development of keratoconus.

Rubbing of the eyes

Keratoconus is linked to a history of chronic eye rubbing. It might potentially be a role in the development of the disease.


Keratoconus is frequently detected in adolescence. As the condition advances, young individuals with severe keratoconus are more likely to require surgical intervention.

Signs & Symptoms

Symptoms of improper corneal curvature include:

  • Double vision or blurry eyesight.
  • Myopia (nearsightedness) with astigmatism (astigmatism).
  • Light sensitivity has increased.
  • Halos, glare, or blurry vision at night.

Keratoconus is a condition that causes nearsightedness (myopia). This indicates that you have difficulty seeing distant objects. Astigmatism is also a result of it. This is an issue with your eye’s ability to focus and generate a focused image on the retina. These factors combine to cause hazy vision.

Keratoconus frequently affects both eyes. It’s possible that one eye develops symptoms before the other. It’s possible that one eye is more impacted than the other.

Symptoms usually begin from adolescence and worsen until about the age of 40. Unless your eye doctor performs particular testing, you may not be aware that you have this condition. Your vision may deteriorate significantly in the future. If your vision is deteriorating faster than predicted, your doctor may recommend a keratoconus evaluation.

Keratoconus is a condition that affects people of all ages

Keratoconus has yet to be identified as a cause. Keratoconus appears to run in families and occurs more frequently in persons with particular medical disorders, according to some research.

However, in the vast majority of instances, there is no damage or sickness to the eye that causes it to begin to alter. Keratoconus patients have a proclivity for rubbing their eyes, which can hasten the progression of the disease.

How do you know if you have keratoconus?

Keratoconus is difficult to detect, particularly in its early stages, because the technology used in normal eye exams cannot always detect tiny changes in corneal thickness or shape.

Corneal topography, a sophisticated, noninvasive, computer-assisted imaging technique that generates a “map” of the cornea’s curvature, is the best test for diagnosing keratoconus.

Keratoscopy, which determines the thickness of the cornea, can also be used to identify the condition. The cornea’s cone form can be seen with the naked eye in extreme situations.


The most common therapy for keratoconus patients is contact lenses. Although the lenses improve eyesight, they do not treat or cure the illness.

After being diagnosed, patients with the syndrome should wear sunglasses outside to help reduce or prevent the disease from progressing. Corneal transplantation has been the only surgical option for many years.

The following technological technologies may help to postpone or eliminate corneal transplantation:

  • Conductive keratoplasty (high-frequency radio radiation) alters the curvature of the cornea to improve contact lens fit.
  • Corneal implants (intracorneal ring segments) alter the cornea’s shape to improve contact lens fit.
  • Corneal collagen cross-linking is a procedure for stiffening the cornea. It usually keeps the problem from growing any worse. After that, laser vision correction may be used to reshape the cornea.

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