We do Eye Tests and fit Contact Lenses for Keratoconus in Sydney and Parramatta
Discover our dedicated Keratoconus Care Centre at Westmead Eyes Optometrists, where we expertly manage and monitor the progression of keratoconus while providing custom contact lens fittings. Our dedicated team collaborates closely with leading corneal eye specialists in Sydney and Westmead Hospital to ensure the highest standard of care for your condition and overall eye health.
What is Keratoconus?
Keratoconus is an eye condition in which the cornea (the front surface of the eye) thins and weakens, causing it to change shape. The thinning of the surface causes the cornea to protrude forward, developing a ‘cone’ shape. This distorts light entering the eye and results in blurry vision and light sensitivity. Glare and dazzle from bright lights may be a problem due to the irregular shape of the cornea. As the disease advances, other complications can occur such as scarring or hydrops. Extreme cases of keratoconus may result in the need for a corneal transplant.
Typically, we diagnose keratoconus in patients aged between 16-30. We have the tools to detect and monitor the progression of keratoconus using a corneal topographer. A corneal topographer can diagnose keratoconus in its very early stages and allows us to map out and track the changes of the shape of the cornea over time. If progression is rapid we may refer you for treatment with an eye specialist with methods such as corneal collagen cross-linking (CXL) , Intacs corneal ring segment implants, and if all other treatment options are unable to give a satisfactory visual outcome, a corneal transplant or graft surgery.
Contact Lens Fitting for Keratoconus
In cases of moderate to advanced keratoconus, patients often can no longer achieve clear vision with glasses. The solution is to be fit with specialised rigid contact lenses. These lenses act as a new surface and make the corneal shape more regular. When fitting keratoconus contact lenses, our goal is to provide the best possible vision with the least amount of stress on the cornea. There must be as little force on the thinnest point of the cornea as possible, otherwise there is a risk of long term damage.
Specialty contact lenses such as Kerasoft IC soft lenses, gas permeable lenses, hybrid lenses, and scleral lenses can be used to help achieve functional vision. Many patients achieve good vision for many years using custom designed contact lenses, without ever needing a corneal transplant.
We routinely see patients referred to us by other optometrists, eye surgeons and cornea specialists to see if a contact lens is an option for vision correction. Often, the vision of patients with even advanced keratoconus is restored and a corneal transplant can be avoided.
I have Keratoconus – am I suitable for contact lenses?
If you have keratoconus and would like to talk to us about whether you require contact lenses and which contact lens type might suit you best, please don’t hesitate to contact us for an appointment or trial. We are experienced in this condition and can recommend treatment options specific to your case.
Support Groups for Patients with Keratoconus
For further information or support you can visit the Keratoconus Australia website: www.keratoconus.org.au. The Keratoconus group on Facebook and Keratoconus Support, Australia Forum are great support networks with individuals all sharing their stories.