Address Keratoconus and Restore Vision with a Corneal Transplant
By David Gross on December 29, 2016
The cornea is the transparent outer layer of the eye. This tissue is responsible for roughly 75 percent of the eye’s focusing power. Along with the lens, the cornea helps to focus light on the retina at the back of the eye. If the cornea is misshaped or affected by other eye conditions, a person’s vision will suffer.
Keratoconus is one corneal condition that can alter vision. Unfortunately, keratoconus does not typically respond well to treatment with glasses. The best treatment for keratoconus is a corneal transplant. A corneal transplant uses donor corneal tissue to replace a damaged or misshaped cornea to restore crisp, clear eyesight for patients. At Deen-Gross Eye Centers, we offer corneal transplant surgery for keratoconus so that our Merrillville, IN patients are not compromised by poor vision.
What Is Keratoconus?
Keratoconus is the most common form of corneal dystrophy in the United States. This condition is especially common among teenagers and patients in their 20s. Essentially, keratoconus describes a progressive thinning of the cornea. As the corneal tissue thins, it bulges outward in the center of the eye and creates a cone shape. Keratoconus makes it difficult for the cornea to focus light properly. As a result, patients with keratoconus may develop any of the following vision problems:
- Blurry vision
- Double vision
- Light sensitivity
Keratoconus is a progressive condition that does not immediately affect vision. However, as the shape of the cornea begins to change, vision will be affected. Initially, keratoconus may respond well to glasses, but as the condition progresses, glasses become ineffective. Specially fit contact lenses may also be used to treat keratoconus, but they are not always effective. Keratoconus often leads to the development of scar tissue on the cornea. If scar tissue is present, or if the corneas are too steep, a corneal transplant is the only effective treatment for the condition.
Corneal Transplant for Keratoconus
At Deen-Gross Eye Centers, we specialize in corneal transplants. During a corneal transplant, a damaged or misshaped cornea is removed, and it is replaced with donor corneal tissue. This procedure is becoming far more common and, as a result, corneal donors are usually available. There are several different types of corneal transplants that can be performed. We will evaluate the specific needs of each patient to determine which transplant technique will be most effective. Overall, corneal transplantation is extremely safe, and provides patients with overwhelmingly positive results. Data shows that corneal transplant surgery has over a 97 percent success rate. Some of the benefits of corneal transplant for keratoconus include the following:
- Stronger cornea
- Improved vision
- Correction of astigmatism and other refractive errors
At Deen-Gross Eye Centers, we offer a number of vision treatments that address eye problems and allow us to restore clear, focused vision in patients. If your eyesight is impaired and you would like to learn more about these services, we invite you to contact us at your earliest convenience.
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"After wearing glasses my entire life, Dr. Gross corrected my eyesight to better than 20/20 vision."Richard B - St. John, IN