Dry air makes keratoconus worse

Dry air makes keratoconus worse

June is the month to fight keratoconus, and the main advice to avoid the disease is to avoid scratching or rubbing your eyes. According to ophthalmologist Leôncio Queiroz Neto, chairman of the Instituto Penido, the habit weakens the collagen fibers in the outer lens of the eye (the cornea), which thins and tapers as the disease progresses. The problem is that in a survey of 315 keratoconus patients by Queiroz Neto, 50% suffered from eye allergies. in the cold Dry air adds to this Incidence of up to 70% increases the risk of keratoconus progression “Other factors that may exacerbate this period are higher rates of flu, colds, sinusitis, rhinitis and asthma, which can cause eye irritation. Therefore, people with keratoconus should Double your attention to the resurgence of coronavirus cases,” he said. The WHO (World Health Organization) warns that respiratory viruses are an important risk factor for eye allergies.

The ophthalmologist’s recommendation for immediate relief from an allergic flare is to apply a cold compress to the eyes. If the itching does not go away, consult an ophthalmologist. In more severe cases, treatment is with antiallergic eye drops or corticosteroids. Regardless of the formulation, eye drops should only be used with a prescription and medical supervision, as they are medicines and incorrect use can lead to other eye conditions.

Symptoms and Preventive Diagnosis

The lack of medical follow-up means that keratoconus accounts for 7 out of 10 corneal transplants in Brazil. The problem is that keratoconus can be confused with astigmatism. “Similar symptoms lead many patients to come to the office with astigmatism glasses, but in an ophthalmology reassessment they are diagnosed with keratoconus because the symptoms are similar,” he noted. The main symptoms of keratoconus are:

Change glasses frequently.

Night halo vision.

Photophobia or aversion to sunlight

More severe eye strain during online activities

itching, redness, and dry eyes

The biggest difference in symptoms is the frequent change of glasses for keratoconus. The good news is that the prognosis for the disease can be improved today by examining a tomography scan of thousands of points on both sides of the cornea (outer and inner).

The ophthalmologist said that through this examination, he had found a case of keratoconus in children. “It’s very important Diagnosed in childhood, as children progress more rapidly, may limit treatment and increase morbidity Corneal transplantation.


Queiroz Neto noted that initially vision correction was done with glasses. At its most advanced stage, it needs to accommodate hard contact lenses, flattening the cornea and improving vision correction. The problem, he said, is that not everyone is comfortable with hard lenses. For these people, scleral lenses that sit on the sclera (the white part of the eye) are the best option. He commented that this type of lens improves the stability of the eye surface, reduces tear evaporation, therefore, dry eye retains less impurities and has a good fit even in very irregular corneas.


Ophthalmologists point out that the only therapy that can stop the progression of keratoconus is cross-linking. Surgery is performed on an outpatient basis under local anesthesia. It combines vitamin B2 (riboflavin) with UV radiation to increase the cross-linking of collagen fibers in the cornea by 3 times. This treatment is indicated for progressive keratoconus, and it should only be used in patients with unscarred corneas that are at least 400 microns thick and without glaucoma.

“In addition to the scleral lens, there is a Alternatives to getting rid of advanced keratoconus from corneal transplantation It’s an intracorneal ring,” he noted. The surgery is performed by implanting two arches in the cornea. The pressure created by the device can flatten the curvature of the cornea, improving fit for contact lenses, the expert explained. .Comments, views are also better in most cases.

The ophthalmologist’s advice to parents is to observe whether children have the habit of scratching or rubbing their eyes, and take them to an appointment to avoid greater consequences. Prevention is always better, he concluded, and the only way to prevent progression of keratoconus is to diagnose the disease early so that appropriate treatment can be established.

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