Corneal Cross-Linking

What Is Keratoconus?

Keratoconus is an eye condition that results in a gradual thinning and weakening of the cornea (the clear window in front of the eye). The cornea’s normal, round like a basketball shape develops into a cone-shaped bulge, which distorts vision.

Keratoconus most often begins in patients’ late teens to early twenties and usually gets worse over time. For mild keratoconus, glasses can provide clearer vision, but hard contact lenses may eventually become necessary. As keratoconus continues to progress, contact lenses can no longer improve vision. It is important to note contact lenses do not stop the progression of keratoconus.

If you have a family history of keratoconus or are frequently (once a year or more) changing your glasses prescription, you should be examined for keratoconus.

Symptoms include:

  • Sensitivity to light
  • Blurred/distorted vision
  • Increasing astigmatism in your prescription
  • Frequent changes in prescription lenses
  • Sudden worsening or clouding of vision

iLink®: A Keratoconus Treatment

Keratoconus progression can be stopped with corneal cross-linking, a process that strengthens the collagen bonds with Vitamin B2 eye drops applied to the cornea with ultraviolet light.

iLink — the first and only FDA approved corneal cross-linking treatment — is available at Valley Eye Associates and can help preserve patients’ vision. Valley Eye has been cross-linking patients since 2010 — longer than any clinic in Wisconsin.

How it works: iLink strengthens the cornea by creating new bonds between collagen fibers — like more links in a fence. Because iLink stiffens the cornea, its shape is less likely to become more distorted, preserving vision.

Cross-linking is not vision correction (refractive surgery), so patients should not expect to become less dependent on glasses or contact lenses after the treatment is completed.

We’re Here for You

Keratoconus is a serious condition that requires skill and experience to avoid severe vision loss. The doctors at Valley Eye Associates have both and are here to help you care for your sight. To learn more about keratoconus and iLink, please call us at (800) 344‑4443 or fill out our contact form.

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