UV Corneal Collagen Crosslinking
UV(Ultraviolet) Corneal collagen cross-linking with riboflavin (C3R or UV-X), Keratoconus and Endothelial-Epithelial Dystrophy (EED) treatment. An innovative, minimally invasive method of keratoconus treatment now is available in our clinic. It allows to stop keratoconus progression and helps in cases of endothelial-epithelial corneal dystrophy that occurs as a disease or as a complication after cataract surgery. Combined effect of low-intensity ultraviolet light and a photosensitizing agent - riboflavin - leads to the formation of additional links-bridges between disparate collagen fibers of the cornea stroma and their connection into a single solid network, increasing the strength of the cornea in 3 to 6 times. This is out-patient procedure and does not require stay in hospital. It is not usually used for patients over 40 years of age as their corneas should have stiffened naturally with age and so stopped progressing.
The procedure takes up to an hour (30 minutes for the protective riboflavin dye and 30 minutes for the UV light). It is the best for early stage of keratoconus and can be used in combination with other treatments.
Keratoconus is a degenerative disorder of the eye in which structural changes within the cornea cause it to thin and change to a more conical shape than its normal gradual curvature. Endothelial-Epithelial Dystrophy (EED) is a severe pathological condition of the cornea. The main pathophysiologic mechanism of formation of EED is considered to be a violation of the barrier and pump function of the endothelium of the cornea. In damaged cells, disrupted production of cytokines responsible for collagen occurs, leading to a progressively increasing hydration of the stroma with degeneration of keratocytes, detachment of the epithelium and the appearance of the corneal syndrome. Choice of treatment depends on the stage of EED pathological process. All kinds of treatment of this disease are divided into conservative and surgical. Cross-linking is effective in corneal dystrophy, removing fully or partly corneal edema, improving visual acuity and removing corneal syndrome: photophobia, tearing, eye pain, and foreign body sensation.