Understanding Keratoconus Symptoms

Generally when we think of Keratoconus what comes to mind? Well if you already a Keratoconus patient you may think of things like blurred vision, or nearsightedness, astigmatism, or even sensitivity to light. The truth is these are often generalized symptoms and are also associated with other conditions, making it hard to diagnose as Keratoconus. So what questions should you be asking your doctor and does your current doctor specialize in treating patients with Keratoconus?

First the symptoms of Keratoconus:

High Astigmatism
Increased Astigmatism
Blurred Vision
Distorted night vision
Sensitivity to light
Blurred Vision

Blurred Vision and sensitivity to light are also found in patients with diabetes. Patients with Diabetes also have trouble with cataracts and astigmatism. However in recent studies researchers have found that patients with diabetes are at less risk of getting Keratoconus. Why? It has been found that patients with Type 2 Diabetes often develop harder corneas, in turn causing the exact opposite of the effects of Keratoconus. However few Diabetics are checked for Keratoconus because the symptoms they are experiencing are also symptoms caused by the damage of the sugar to the eye.

Blurred Vision and Pain in the eyes can also be caused by dry eye. Doctors find that patients who do excessive reading or writing blink less causing the eye to dry out more. The effects of dry eye while the condition can be well treated and is not life threatening can cause some damage to the cornea, creating double vision, distorted images, and can cause a lot of comfort.

The most important thing is to be sure to rule out risk factors for Keratoconus, find the right doctor, and ask questions. Below is a guide to assist you:

Risk Factors:

Family History
Trauma or injury to eyes
Constant rubbing of the eye
Inherited Diseases: Down Syndrome, Some Renial diseases

Questions to Ask the Doctor:

If you have a family history of Keratoconus you might ask:

What area do you specialize in?
How much experience do you have diagnosing and treating patients with Keratoconus?
What tests and treatments do you have available?

If you notice symptoms of Keratoconus you might ask:

Can you explain the results of my tests?
If your sight is getting worse you might ask- Do you know why my vision is getting worse?
What can I do to help improve my vision or will It continue to get worse?

Make sure to log your symptoms and how long they last. If you have a family history of eye disease or you are not sure if you have a family history of eye disease make sure the doctor is aware of this. Above all don’t be afraid to ask questions no matter how small they seem. If the doctor doesn’t have time to answer your questions so you understand him- find one that will. Your Vision care should be your concern.

For more information about keratoconus visit the American Keratoconus Association

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