The cornea is the clear, protective outer layer of the eye. In addition to keeping dust and debris from damaging the eye, the cornea also refracts the light that enters the eye so that you can focus on objects both close and far away. Medical issues with the cornea can lead to serious complications, such as corneal disease.
This inflammation of the cornea can be caused by a viral, bacterial, or fungal infection that affects the area. Sometimes, an injury caused by contact lenses can lead to keratitis. Symptoms of this condition include severe pain, blurry vision, redness, extreme light sensitivity, or tearing and discharge from the eye.
This form of the herpes virus creates painful sores on the cornea, and the inflammation that results can cause further eye damage over time. While there’s no cure for ocular herpes, the symptoms can usually be controlled with certain treatments at our office. Another type of herpes, herpes zoster, is more commonly known as shingles. This virus can also affect the cornea, although not everyone who gets shingles develops this symptom.
This type of corneal disease is characterized by thinning and distortion of the cornea. In early stages, keratoconus causes nearsightedness and astigmatism. Over time, poor night vision, swelling, corneal scars, and vision loss can result.
This group of more than 20 different diseases is caused by structural deficiencies in the cornea. Corneal dystrophies often manifest with astigmatism, nearsightedness, or farsightedness; moderate to severe pain, especially as the disease progresses; light sensitivity; frequent tearing; and the feeling of debris in the eye. Depending on the type of corneal dystrophy, the symptoms can be controlled with various modalities.
If you’re experiencing the symptoms of one of these corneal conditions, seek immediate medical treatment. At Live Oak Ophthalmology, our skilled ophthalmologists are trained and ready to provide you with a personalized treatment for corneal disease developed specially for you. We are proud to offer cornea transplant surgery in addition to other treatment methods. To learn more about the services we offer, contact our office in Wilmington today and schedule your consultation.