Emerging Diagnostics and Keratoconus Treatment: What Ophthalmology Residents Should Know

An article by Dr. Alanna Nattis

Advances in the diagnosis and treatment of keratoconus may better help doctors preserve and enhance vision for patients in ways that wasn’t possible before.  Dr. Nattis outlines several techniques and options for keratoconus treatment which have experienced a massive evolution over time.  A combination between early diagnostics and successful management strategies pave the way for a better and more advanced treatment of keratoconus patients.

Keratoconus is a non-inflammatory, progressive corneal ectasia, characterized by bilateral asymmetric degeneration, leading to paracentral thinning and protrusion. Non-surgical treatment of the reduced vision often seen in keratoconus includes spectacle correction and contact lenses.  Surgical treatment modalities that do not require corneal transplantation include photorefractive keratectomy (PRK), intracorneal ring segments and intraocular lens placement.  These surgical techniques can help correct refractive error but are not designed to halt disease progression.

Recently, there have been many exciting advances in technology surrounding keratoconus treatment and diagnosis, allowing eye care providers to help preserve and enhance vision for these patients in ways we never could before. This article reviews novel corneal imaging techniques and their role in providing earlier diagnosis and detection of keratoconus.

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