Understanding Keratoconus and How a Cornea Transplant Can Help

Cataracts Blurred vision, distorted vision, clouding, sensitivity to light, and a need to increase your prescription for eyeglasses are all symptoms that can be seen as worsening eyesight. However, you may be experiencing a condition called keratoconus. Keratoconus is a condition that affects the corneas. Let’s take a deeper look at keratoconus and how a cornea transplant can help.

Understanding Keratoconus

Keratoconus is a rare condition of the cornea that affects less than 200,000 Americans every year. Your cornea acts as a clear dome on the outside of your eyes that focuses light so you can see properly. However, keratoconus causes the cornea to gradually become thinner. This distorts the cornea and shifts it from a dome to more of a cone-like shape. This causes symptoms like blurred vision and sensitivity to light. The condition often progresses slowly for about 10 years. However, it can progress longer. While keratoconus usually affects both eyes, it can disproportionally affect one eye over the other. This is most common in ages 16 to 30.

What Causes Keratoconus

Unfortunately, clear causes have not yet been identified for this condition. It’s believed that environment and some genetics could play a role. 10 percent of people with keratoconus also have a parent with keratoconus. However, it is more common in people with Down syndrome, Marfan syndrome, asthma, hay fever, or Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.

Keratoconus Risks

Besides the symptoms that keratoconus causes, there are also some inherent risks that keratoconus causes. Your cornea may rapidly swell and induce a loss of vision and scarring. This is usually caused when the inner membrane of the cornea becomes thin enough to break down. Eventually, the swelling will dissipate, but a scar could remain permanently and affect vision.

Cornea Transplant

Treating keratoconus usually is about mitigating symptoms and slowing the condition. However, that doesn’t address a weakened cornea. Thankfully, at Cape Fear Cataract & Cornea, Dr. Groat can perform a cornea transplant to restore a damaged cornea. Dr. Groat is an American air force veteran who brings expertise and care to every procedure. If you’re concerned that you may have keratoconus, then contact Cape Fear Cataract & Cornea at 910-769-4590 today.

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