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Contact Lenses

If you have mild keratoconus, glasses or soft contact lenses might work for you. However, most people with keratoconus find that rigid contact lenses or scleral contact lenses provide better vision. There are different types of specialized rigid lenses available, and your optometrist will recommend the best fit for you. Another option is the hybrid contact lens, which combines rigid and soft materials for improved comfort and clear vision. Our center can connect you with skilled optometrists specializing in keratoconus lenses in the southern California area. Trying different lenses and lens fitters before considering surgery is advisable.

Dry Eye Management

Many patients find contact lenses uncomfortable due to corneal steepening and dry eyes. We can help you manage dry eyes, enhancing contact lens comfort. Treatments include artificial tears and ointment, addressing lid issues, medications to increase tear production, and punctal plugs to keep your eyes moist, if indicated.  We also perform IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) for dry eyes due to Meibomian gland dysfunction.

Corneal Collagen Crosslinking (CXL)

CXL is a new technology to halt keratoconus progression. It involves strengthening corneal fibers using UV light and vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) drops. We were involved with the advancement and development of CXL from the beginning.  When the treatment was experimental in the US, we offered it through an FDA-approved protocol. This procedure stabilizes the cornea, often improving vision over time.  In the US, it is FDA-approved for patients as young as 14 years of age.  We have an FDA study that allows us to treat progressive keratoconus in adolescents down to 10 years of age.


For those intolerant to contact lenses, INTACS may be an option. These small plastic ring segments are inserted into the cornea to flatten it. The procedure is suitable for keratoconus patients seeking improved vision with or without lenses. Our center employs advanced laser techniques for safer INTACS placement.  INTACS are not for all keratoconus patients, however.

Scar Removal

Occasionally, a scar or haze on the cornea can cause discomfort with contact lenses. This scar can sometimes be removed using a surgical blade or Excimer laser through phototherapeutic keratectomy (PTK), allowing better lens tolerance.

Corneal Transplants

Corneal transplants are reserved for severe cases of keratoconus with central corneal scarring or extreme thinning or steepness. Success rates are high, and patients can often achieve good vision post-surgery. Using the Femtosecond Laser for corneal transplantation provides a faster recovery and better vision with a more precise surgical approach.  Dr. Gaster performs all of these surgical procedures himself and can be reached at the Keratoconus Center at the Cornea Eye Institute in Beverly Hills, California.

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