Keratoconus & Contact Lenses
You control your life, keratoconus does not.
We understand people react differently to the news they have Keratoconus. Lack of knowledge and support often creates fear. We recommend learning as much as you can about this condition and investigating the many options available to let you get back to your life.
While we believe it’s important to accept this diagnosis, we hope to help you realize there are many resources available to help you adapt.
Wondering why you can't just wear glasses or regular contact lenses?
Keratoconus (ker-uh-toe-KOH-nus) occurs when your cornea-the clear, dome-shaped front surface of your eye thins and gradually bulges outward into a cone shape. This cone-shaped cornea causes blurred vision and may cause sensitivity to light and glare.
During the early stages of keratoconus, standard eyeglasses or soft contact lenses can often provide patients with clear and comfortable vision.
As the corneal shape becomes increasingly irregular, the eye becomes incapable of focusing light effectively. making simple tasks like reading, watching TV or driving very difficult. The distortion caused by keratoconus has been compared to viewing a street sign through your car windshield during a rainstorm.
When the cornea becomes highly irregular, eyeglasses or soft lenses cannot adequately compensate for the irregularities, which means they do not provide effective visual correction. Keratoconus that has progressed beyond the early stages needs to be treated with alternative visual correction.
New advancements in technology have opened endless possibilities and life changing solutions. New Corneal Topographer software systems enhance the art of fitting specialty contact lenses with even more customization and astonishing results.
Once topographical images are taken, we will discuss all of the options available for your unique eye. The next step is to actually try some of the lenses on. These lenses are called trials or diagnostic lenses. They are used only for fitting and gathering information that enables us to custom design a contact lens for you. Thanks to this new amazing technology, we've added an additional step! We will create a simulated contact lens fitting using your eye pictures. This step eliminates multiple trials during the fitting stage and is used to completely customize your lens.
Here are some of your options when it comes to contact lenses:
Hybrid lenses- These lenses have a central gas-permeable (GP) region, hyper-bonded to a skirt of soft lens material. Recent hybrid lens designs represent a huge leap forward for the treatment of keratoconus and other ectasias. New designs have materials, both soft and GP, that allow extreme amounts of oxygen to pass through to the cornea. The new generation lenses also have design features which are built specifically to accommodate the shape of a keratoconic eye.
Scleral lenses-These are very large diameter GP lenses that do not contact the cornea. Instead, their weight is distributed over a broad area on the relatively insensitive sclera, or white part of the eye.
Modern corneal Gas Permeable (GP) lenses- These are smaller lenses designed to float over the cornea, be picked up by the upper lid during a blink, then drop back down into place. They are now designed with a high degree of precision making them an excellent choice for the Keratoconic eye.
We have access to EVERY contact lens that is available in Canada! But, we've filtered out our top products to ensure quality, accuracy and consultation support. Any specialty products offered will have been thoughtfully researched, along with fitting certification and training being obtained. We have invested in a multitude of fitting sets so we can begin the process as soon as you are ready. The specialty lens kits we carry on-site include:
- Scleral lenses in an array of brands and designs.
- RGP lenses for the irregular shaped eye (Keratoconus, post surgical or astigmatism.)
- RGP lenses for the not so complicated eye.
- Custom soft lenses for Keratoconus and post surgical.
- Hybrid lenses
Keratoconus patients may be treated in both contact lenses and surgical treatments. New design contact lenses are more comfortable and have better optical properties than GPs of the past. New surgical procedures are now avoiding corneal transplantation more than ever. Treating Keratoconus is complex and requires the continuum of care with a team involving your corneal surgeon, optometrist, and contact lens specialists. Many patients that have underwent corneal surgeries such as Corneal Collagen Cross Linking or Intacts may subsequently benefit from a specialty contact lens.
If you are struggling with your vision, please contact us. We'd prefer to have our Keratoconus patients referred to our office, however we are happy to help in any way that we can! We can contact your doctors and work out a plan without a direct referral.