Keratoconus can cause these kinds of visual distortions. Common symptoms like those pictured are: ghosting, multiple images, glare, halos, starbursts around lights and blurred vision.
Keratoconus is a progressive eye disease in which the normally round cornea thins and begins to bulge into a cone-like shape. This cone shape deflects light as it enters the eye on its way to the light-sensitive retina, causing distorted vision.
Keratoconus can occur in one or both eyes and often begins during a person's teens or early 20s.
As the cornea becomes more irregular in shape, it causes progressive nearsightedness and irregular astigmatism to develop, creating additional problems with distorted and blurred vision. Glare and light sensitivity also may occur.
Often, keratoconic patients experience changes in their eyeglass prescription every time they visit their eye care practitioner.
New research suggests the weakening of the corneal tissue that leads to keratoconus may be due to an imbalance of enzymes within the cornea. This imbalance makes the cornea more susceptible to oxidative damage from compounds called free radicals, causing it to weaken and bulge forward.
Risk factors for oxidative damage and weakening of the cornea include a genetic predisposition, explaining why keratoconus often affects more than one member of the same family.
Treatments for progressive keratoconus include:
1. Corneal cross-linking (CXL)
2. Custom soft contact lenses
3. Gas permeable contact lenses
4. "Piggybacking" contact lenses
5. Hybrid contact lenses
6. Scleral and semi-scleral lenses
8. Topography-guided conductive keratoplasty
9. Corneal transplant
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