Keratoconus Evaluation and Confirmation

There are several things you can do if you feel you are suffering from Keratoconus. The professionals will help not only evaluate your physical status but also take a thorough examination of your medical history.

The Visit:
When visiting the Ophthalmologist or Optometrist they will gather important medical and vision history. It is important to tell them everything you can about your history as well as family history. They will pay attention to your vision complaints to understand better what you have been going through. They will also ask you several questions about your history to try and determine if you have had an eye injury.

The Ophthalmologist or Optometrist will also give you tests to check your visual acuity. This means reading letters from an eye chart much like a general eye evaluation. It can also include measuring the curvature of the corneas using a topographer. Having an irregular curvature could mean possible Keratoconus.

Keratoconus Diagnosis:
Once you get to this point of the evaluation the doctor may conduct several tests to confirm the diagnosis. Retinoscopy is one test the doctor can preform to confirm Keratoconus. This would involve focusing a light beam on the retina. The Reflex or (Reflection) is observed. If there is a scissor reflex, more tests will be needed to confirm Keratoconus.

One additional test that is often performed is a cornea ultrasound(Pachymetry). This will measure the cornea thickness. A thin cornea can be a sign of Keratoconus.

Another test examines your cornea with a slit lamp(Microscope). More advanced cases can be determined right away with this test, because of the yellow-brown or olive-green rings or a (Fleischer ring)

Fleischer Ring-

Seen in 50% of patients with Keratoconus. Also caused by Iron Oxide Hemosiderin that is deposited in the Corneal Epithelium.

Vogt’s Striae- These are fine lines or (stress lines) caused by stretching and can be seen on the front of the cornea.

Munson’s Sign- is another give away of Keratoconus. This is a V-shaped indentation and sometimes seen in the lower eyelid when the sufferer moves their line of sight in the downward direction. Most signs are detected before this stage and is seldom used for diagnosing keratoconus.

It is important to get a definitive diagnosis for keratoconus. Many times it requires several tests to make an absolute confirmation. There are numerous other conditions that have similar symptoms of keratoconus. Make sure you are being seen by a specialist in diagnosis of keratoconus and ask questions if you do not understand your diagnosis. After all it is your health at stake.

For more information about keratoconus visit the American Academy of Opthamology

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