What is the cornea?
The cornea is the clear outer covering of the eye that helps protect the inner eye from germs and dirt. It also helps filter UV light and plays a critical role in clear, crisp vision.
What are some common corneal diseases?
Corneal disease can be due to degeneration or genetics.
- keratitis, an inflammation of the cornea caused by bacteria or fungi
- keratoconjunctivitis, inflammation caused by bacteria from conjunctivitis, an infection of the inner eyelid
- ocular herpes, a viral infection associated with herpes simplex virus I or II
- shingles, or herpes zoster, occurring in patients with shingles and caused by the herpes zoster virus
Antiviral and antibiotic medications can help resolve many diseases, but some diseases like ocular herpes have no cure; they may, however, be controlled with proper care.
Corneal dystrophies, or structural problems of the cornea include:
- keratoconus, a gradual thinning and reshaping of the cornea that causes vision distortion such as astigmatism and nearsightedness
- Fuch's dystrophy, a gradual disintegration of the cells of the corneal surface layer
- lattice dystrophy, a buildup of protein fibers in the cornea's middle layer
What are the symptoms of corneal disease?
The cornea has an ample blood supply that helps it heal quickly after many types of injuries or diseases. In more significant injuries or diseases, symptoms may include:
- pain on the eye surface
- discharge from the eye
- sensitivity to bright light
- excessive tearing
- blurry vision
- visible scarring
How can I prevent corneal disease?
The best ways to prevent disease and injury are to:
- wear protective eyewear
- avoid contact people who have corneal diseases like conjunctivitis
- never share contact lens solution or carriers, eye makeup or eye drops
- see your eye doctor regularly
Get Diagnosed Today
Corneal diseases can distort your vision and make daily tasks difficult. We can help. Schedule your consultation online or contact our office at (310) 340-6925 to learn more.