Laser Eye Surgery Reviews
Kiran Kundi is one of the 2000 British adults who are diagnosed with the rare disease Keratoconus each year. Most of these people will experience a rapid degeneration of their sight which may not immediately be recognised by an eye specialist.
Having worn glasses since the age of 13, Kiran, a customer service advisor from Solihull, was concerned when her sight started deteriorating rapidly in one eye, just after her 19th birthday. A trip to her optician produced some confusing results, so Kiran was referred to her local hospital where she was diagnosed with Keratoconus.
Keratoconus, meaning cone-shaped cornea, is the stretching and thinning of the cornea – the major focusing surface of the eye. Where the cornea thins, it bulges causing short-sightedness and irregular, distorted vision. The cause of Keratoconus is unknown; however it is thought to be associated with an allergy or genetic condition. Unlike most eye conditions, Keratoconus affects the young and is commonly diagnosed in the teens or early twenties. It is difficult to predict how far the condition will progress causing high levels of stress and anxiety on diagnosis.
Within her treatment plan, Kiran was prescribed contact lenses but was informed that good vision would be very difficult to maintain and as her condition progressed she could only expect her sight to get worse. Contact lenses, although good for improving vision for those with Keratoconus, cannot slow down the progression of the disease and Kiran was terrified that she would be left without her eyesight altogether. In spite of her anxiety, she received no further help from the NHS.
Feeling completely abandoned by her hospital, Kiran searched the internet for advice and came across a laser eye surgery clinic that could help her with her condition. In November 2009, Kiran visited Accuvision Laser Eye Clinic in Solihull.
At her first consultation, Kiran was advised that her left eye was suitable for a specialist treatment called Topography guided re-profiling, prior to receiving another advanced procedure called Corneal Collagen Cross-linking. Accuvision is the only clinic in the UK (1 of 6 clinics across the entire world) that can offer these specialist procedures. The condition in the right eye had unfortunately progressed too far to benefit from re-profiling but could still be stabilised with the Corneal Collagen Cross-linking treatment to preserve her current level of vision.
Topography guided re-profiling uses a laser to carefully re-profile tiny areas of the cornea and significantly alter the shape of the cone, making vision much clearer than before. This is undertaken prior to the stabilisation of the cornea using Corneal Collagen Cross-linking. Cross-linking uses a combination of Riboflavin drops and ultra violet light that react with tissues in the cornea, strengthening them by creating more cross-linking between them. Although there is still no complete cure for Keratoconus, this procedure significantly improves sight and patients have now been treated and followed up for over five years without evidence of any further change in their condition.
Following her surgery, Kiran now has 20/20 vision in her left eye where she was treated with the Topography guided re-profiling. Unfortunately, the condition had progressed too far in her right eye for this treatment so she was unable to regain completely stable vision in both eyes. Had the condition been picked up sooner by an eye specialist, this could have been rectified.
Kiran now has a new lease of life. For the first time in her 21 years she can wake up and get out of bed without putting her glasses on. She wants more young people to be aware of the condition so that they don’t have to go through the same thing that she did.