For patients with keratoconus — a condition in which the cornea grows thin and weak — corneal cross-linking is often used. This procedure, sometimes referred to as “CXL”, is used to strengthen corneas.
About Corneal Cross-Linking
Corneal cross-linking is a minimally invasive procedure that uses ultraviolet light and eyedrops to strengthen the collagen fibers in the cornea. While corneal cross-linking has been practiced outside the United States for more than a decade, the procedure was only recently approved for use within the U.S. At Kelly Vision, we are proud to be one of the few eye centers in the country to offer this innovative new treatment.
What is Keratoconus?
Keratoconus is a common disease that occurs in approximately 1 in 400 Americans. With this condition, the cornea becomes weak, progressively thinner, and irregular in shape which can cause high levels of astigmatism. Keratoconus patients often require glasses first, then contact lenses. If the condition progresses to a severe level, a corneal transplant may be required.
How Effective is CXL?
Research studies have shown that CXL may prevent further vision loss in over 99% of patients, and it often improves vision in 60%-81% of patients treated.
How Long Does the Procedure Take?
The CXL procedure takes approximately one hour and 15 minutes, and both eyes can have the procedure performed at the same time. It is painless, although some patients may experience some discomfort during recovery.
When is the Best Time to Have CXL Done?
The best time to treat keratoconus is before astigmatism has become severe and vision has been lost. Many patients can often experience some improvement in vision over months to years after the CXL procedure. So, in general, the sooner that keratoconus can be treated with CXL, the better.
What is iLink Corneal Cross-Linking?
iLink™ corneal cross-linking is a minimally invasive treatment proven to be safe and effective in slowing or halting the progression of keratoconus to preserve vision. iLink is the only FDA-approved corneal cross-linking procedure (approved in the U.S. since April 2016), is the only cross-linking procedure eligible for reimbursement in the U.S., and is widely covered by insurance.
Many patients want to know if their procedure is covered by health insurance. This isn’t always clear until we have spoken with you, but many services that we offer are fully or partially covered. If there’s a procedure that you’re interested in and you’d like to know whether or not it’s covered, we encourage you to inquire about specifics when you’re in the office with us. We can determine if your procedure will be assisted by the financial help of health coverage.
Your Free Consultation at Kelly Vision Center
Dr. James Kelly is a board-certified ophthalmologist, with refractive surgery as his subspecialty. As a comprehensive refractive surgeon, Dr. Kelly is certified in all aspects of refractive surgery, which allows him to offer patients a full range of surgical and non-surgical options to get the best solution possible for their visual needs. There are very few doctors in the country that are able to offer this. Since founding Kelly Vision Center in 1998, providing excellence in clinical and surgical care for patients is Dr. Kelly’s top priority. He and his team offer a highly professional, personalized, patient-centric experience. For more information about corneal cross-linking or keratoconus, or to learn if you’re a candidate for this treatment, please contact us to set up your free consultation at Kelly Vision Center.