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How Long Can I Wait to Do Something About My Keratoconus?

Wow, were we wrong about this question until new research was published!

Doctors are still telling patients with keratoconus they can avoid treating this progressive disease because they are “stable.”  Even many textbooks say they can ignore the risk of quickly losing their sight because it won’t ever get worse over the age of 30, 40, or even 60.

Patients often come in worried their other doctors are “watching them go blind” and angry they have lost lots of vision quickly. Keratoconus (KC or KCN) is a progressive, bilateral, and asymmetric disease that leads to bulging and thinning of the cornea and visual loss. This means both eyes are affected,one sooner than the other and that it progresses (gets worse) quickly with no warning.

Suddenly losing sight is bad enough, but there’s also the risk of bulging,  stretched cornea layers suddenly bursting, resulting in what doctors call hydrops.

This person who put off keratoconus CXL
treatment suddenly developed hydrops.

Hydrops progressed to severe swelling, pain, blindness, and emergency surgery.

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