How to Deal with Keratoconus During COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic has made life challenging for many If you live with keratoconus, you may find it particularly difficult as your eyesight can worsen without proper treatment. As a leading eye care clinic, we often get calls from patients wondering the following:
- Whether updating their lens prescription is critical, considering the potential risks of going out during the coronavirus pandemic.
- If it is better, in the long run, to opt for a routine eye exam during the pandemic or if it is a good time to get corneal cross-linking.
Our specialists have put together this guide to dealing with keratoconus during the COVID-19 situation so you can make an informed decision.
Keratoconus is a Progressive Condition
Keratoconus tends to get worse over time, which is why early diagnosis and proper treatment are crucial. If you have this eye condition, your cornea may weaken and become thin. It can also develop a cone-like bulge, leading to optical irregularity. If you leave it unchecked and untreated, there are high chances you will experience significant visual loss, potentially requiring a corneal transplant in extreme cases.
Research and studies show that individuals who have a parent, child, or sibling suffering from keratoconus face an increased likelihood of developing the condition than those with no affected relatives. This is why if there is a family history of keratoconus, it is beneficial to get your eyes examined regularly. Be sure to consult your eye doctor if you notice changes in your eyesight.
Signs and Symptoms to Watch Out For
If you have keratoconus and are contemplating eye surgery or corneal cross-linking, there are a few symptoms that may indicate your condition is progressing.
- The need to rub eye excessively
- Slightly blurred vision
- Difficulty seeing at night
- Experiencing frequent headaches
- Numerous changes in contact lens or eyeglass prescription
- Having vision problems that cannot be treated with eyeglasses
If you notice any of these signs, consider making an appointment with your eye doctor immediately to discuss your condition and begin proper treatment.
When to Consult Your Eye Doctor During COVID-19
It was understandable to cancel an eye appointment at the beginning of the pandemic, as there were many risks involved in leaving your home. However, practices are implementing stricter precautions and following safety measures to ensure your appointment is as comfortable and safe as possible, letting you visit your eye doctor confidently. Depending on your age, eye condition, overall health, and if you are experiencing any symptoms, you may need to have eye exams more frequently. This is especially true if you have keratoconus.
If it has been a while since your last eye exam, be sure to consult your eye doctor so they can examine your condition. Moreover, if you have noticed any drastic changes in your eyesight, it is best to make an appointment immediately to avoid permanent damage or any complications.
The Need for Keratoconus Cross-Linking & Surgical Interventions
If your keratoconus has worsened in the last few months, your lenses may not be as effective as before at treating your eyesight. Schedule an eye exam with your doctor so they can update your prescription and discuss treatment choices such as corneal cross-linking or eye surgery. Although lenses may improve your eyesight, they cannot treat the condition.
Corneal Cross-Linking for Keratoconus
This eye surgery takes about an hour and is a minimally invasive outpatient procedure that can help limit the progression of this disease. If your keratoconus is progressing, you should consider this treatment despite the coronavirus pandemic. On the day of your procedure, it helps to arrive at the eye clinic approximately two hours before your appointment, so you have enough time to meet with the specialist and prepare for the surgery.
We Can Assist with Keratoconus Treatment & Eye Surgery
UELC is a leading laser eye clinic committed to offering timely services and access to a wide range of non-surgical and surgical treatments. We have an experienced team of eye surgeons and support staff to examine your eye health, address your concerns, and cater to your needs. We use state-of-the-art technology and a personalized approach to provide the best possible eye care solution that meets your requirements.