Can an eye doctor check whether I have keratoconus with a normal eye examination?

Keratoconus (and the spectrum of keratoconus-like problems of the cornea) are easily missed within the context of a normal, routine eye exam. Without specialized diagnostic equipment, keratoconus is usually only discoverable in its advanced stages using biomicroscopy (slit lamp) and refraction. While this may be of little importance in prescribing and fitting glasses or contact lenses, it can be critical if one is contemplating refractive surgery such as LASIK. Diagnostic equipment measuring posterior and anterior topography, corneal and epithelial thickness are required to provide more than a superficial assessment of the presence of keratoconus.

_Written by J. Trevor Woodhams, M.D. - Chief of Surgery, Woodhams Eye Clinic