Contact Lenses for Keratoconus:
What Are Your Options?
1) Soft contact lenses
These lenses typically do not work well for people with keratoconus. Soft contacts drape over the cornea and patients with keratoconus need a stiffer contact lens to correct for the corneal irregularities. A soft lens is too flexible to do this.
2) Rigid gas permeable contact lenses
These lenses work better than soft lenses because of their hard shape. Patients with keratoconus have an irregular cornea so using a rigid lens that rests on top of that irregular cornea creates a smooth surface which gives clearer vision.
3) Hybrid contact lenses
These lenses have a hard center and soft surrounding skirt which usually makes this lens more comfortable than a standard rigid gas permeable lens.
4) Scleral contact lenses
These are hard contact lenses that rest on the white part of the eye and are significantly bigger than standard contact lenses. Their general appearance is in the shape of a tiny bowl that needs to be filled with preservative-free saline before putting them in. These lenses vault (or arch) over the irregular cornea to give you clearer vision.
Depending on the severity of your keratoconus diagnosis, one lens may be a better option than another. Talk to your eye care provider to find out which contact lenses for keratoconus will work best for you.
Pedro Gomez OD.
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