Debunking the Top 7 Myths about Keratoconus
Keratoconus is a progressive eye condition. It affects the shape of the cornea, causing it to become thinner and more cone-shaped, with distorted vision. Despite its prevalence; there are still many misconceptions about this condition that can lead to confusion and delayed treatment. In this blog, we will take a deeper look into these myths and provide you with a better understanding of this condition and what you can do if you have been diagnosed with it.
Myth #1: Keratoconus causes cataracts
One of the most widespread myths about keratoconus is that it causes cataracts. While both conditions affect the eye; they are separate and distinct. Cataracts are a clouding of the natural lens in the eye, while keratoconus affects the cornea, a completely different structure in the eye.
While someone with keratoconus may also develop cataracts, the two conditions are not directly related. People with Keratoconus are more likely to develop cataracts at a younger age, but the development of cataracts is not directly caused by keratoconus.
Myth #2: Keratoconus has no cure
Currently, there is no known cure for keratoconus, but there are several treatments available that can help manage the condition and improve vision. One of the most common treatments for keratoconus is the use of specialized contact lenses, such as rigid gas permeable (RGP) lenses, scleral lenses, or hybrid lenses. These lenses can help correct vision by reshaping the cornea and reducing the irregularities caused by keratoconus.
Another treatment option is corneal cross-linking, which involves applying a special solution to the cornea and then exposing it to ultraviolet light. This procedure can help strengthen the cornea and slow or stop the progression of keratoconus.
Myth #3: Keratoconus causes blindness
Keratoconus can lead to significant vision impairment and visual disability when left untreated, but it does not typically cause blindness. In advanced cases, the cornea can become so steep and distorted that it is difficult for light to enter the eye, leading to severe vision loss. However, this is rare, and early detection and treatment of the condition can help slow its progression and preserve vision.
While keratoconus can cause significant visual disability, it is important to understand that it is a treatable condition with several effective methods of managing it, especially when it is detected early. It is important to understand that the progression of keratoconus can differ for each person, and some people may experience more rapid progression than others.
Regular eye exams are essential to monitor the progression of the condition and ensure that any vision changes are addressed promptly. Early detection and treatment can make a significant difference in preserving vision and quality of life for people with keratoconus.
Myth #4: Keratoconus is caused by rubbing your eyes
Some people believe that excessive eye rubbing causes keratoconus. This is not true.
While eye rubbing can exacerbate the condition’s symptoms, it is not the root cause. The exact cause of keratoconus is not fully understood. Still, it is believed to be a combination of genetic and environmental factors, such as genetic predisposition, prolonged exposure to UV rays and certain chemicals.
Keratoconus can be caused when the cornea of the eye is weakened by trauma such as prolonged and excessive rubbing of the eyes. However, the average person is unlikely to develop keratoconus from typical eye rubbing.
Myth #5: Keratoconus only affects a certain age group
Although the onset of keratoconus usually occurs between the ages of 10 and 25, it can affect people of all ages, including the elderly. As keratoconus is a progressive condition, it can develop or worsen over time, regardless of age.
Myth #6: Keratoconus only affects one eye
Some people believe that keratoconus only affects one eye. It can affect one or both eyes, and the progression of the condition can be different in each eye. Because several factors, including genetic and environmental, can cause a thinning of the cornea, keratoconus is likely to affect both eyes in some way.
It is not uncommon for one eye to be affected more severely than the other. The progression of the condition can also vary, with one eye showing rapid regression while the other remains stable.
Myth #7: Correcting your vision can cure keratoconus
Correcting your vision can improve the symptoms of Keratoconus, but it does not cure the condition itself. Keratoconus is a progressive condition that causes the cornea to thin and bulge, leading to visual distortions and decreased vision quality. While glasses and contact lenses can help correct the visual distortions caused by Keratoconus, they do not address the underlying structural changes in the cornea or slow progression.
However, certain treatments such as corneal cross-linking may help to slow or halt the progression of Keratoconus, and in some cases, corneal transplant surgery may be necessary to replace the damaged cornea with a healthy donor cornea. It’s important to discuss all available treatment options with your eye doctor to determine the best course of action for managing Keratoconus.
Schedule Your Appointment to Discuss the Facts of Keratoconus Today
It is important to understand the facts about keratoconus and dispel the myths surrounding this condition. Early detection and effective treatment are crucial for preserving vision and slowing the progression of the condition.
Regular eye exams are the best way to monitor eye health and ensure timely treatment of vision changes with your eye doctor. Schedule an eye exam at Miami Contact Lens Institute to determine the best treatment option for your eye health and comfort.