Astigmatism

Astigmatism Specialist
As a board-certified ophthalmologist, Dr. John Pilavas offers treatment for astigmatism and other eye conditions that affect his patients’ vision. New York residents who live in the Astoria area, are encouraged to make an appointment with the Dr. Pilavas if they begin to experience blurred vision or any other symptoms that indicate a change in eyesight.

Astigmatism Q & A

by John Pilavas, MD

How is an astigmatism treated?

The curvature of the cornea determines the accuracy of a patient's vision. If the curvature begins to change or is altered due to an injury or illness, it's called an astigmatism. As the curvature continues to change, the patient's eyesight will continue to worsen.

An astigmatism can occur at any time, and a small percentage of patients are born with an astigmatism. Children are often unaware that their vision isn't perfect, but adults will often begin to notice the change as soon as it starts to affect their vision: As their vision begins to change, they may report that things are distorted or out of focus.

What is keratoconus and how is it related to astigmatism?

Keratoconus is a condition that affects the cornea of the eye. Those witjh a really strong astigmatism may eventually develop keratoconus. When a patient is diagnosed with the keratoconus, their cornea has become extremely thin and starts to lose its natural shape. As the condition worsens, the cornea begins to bulge outward, causing the eye to take on a cone shape. There are typically three stages of treatment:

  • Corrective lenses and soft, permeable contacts can correct vision problems caused by keratoconus while the condition is still in its earliest stages.
  • As time passes, the soft lenses will no longer work and must be replaced with rigid, permeable lenses.
  • When the condition becomes severe enough that it begins to damage the cornea, a corneal transplant is the final option.

What is Avedro®?

Avedro is a relatively new option that’s being used to treat keratoconus. Avedro involves placing riboflavin drops into the eye directly over the cornea. An ultraviolet light is then directed onto the area. The reaction between the light and the drops causes a cross-linking of collagen fibers to occur, and that provides strength and support to the cornea. As the fibers continue to link, the thinning process within the cornea begins to reverse itself, correcting the vision abnormalities. This process strengthens both the cornea and the stroma, prevents further problems from developing, and gradually restores the patient's vision.

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