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1 out of 375 people have Keratoconus

What is Keratoconus?

Keratoconus is due to the clear, front surface of the eye changes from round to abnormally thin and cone-like. It causes vision to be blurry and distorted which may not be correctable with glasses. This condition is detected during a comprehensive eye exam where the doctor orders a test called corneal topography.

What causes it?

Researchers are still searching for answers, but they believe it may be due to any of the following:

  • Certain conditions such as Down syndrome, retinitis pigmentosa, or Ehler-Danlos syndrome.
  • Eye rubbing – aggressively rubbing eyes may eventually change the shape of the front surface of the eye and lead to keratoconus.
  • Race: African Americans and Latinos are at higher risk.
  • Family history: studies show this condition is hereditary. If you have Keratoconus and would like to know if other family members are at risk for this condition, Lifetime Optometric is the first office in Central California to offer a genetic test for Keratoconus.


AvaGen™ is the genetic eye test that provides answers on your risk for keratoconus and other corneal diseases—helping you and your doctor make confident eye care decisions now.

The unique AvaGen™ test is:

  • Personalized: Uses your DNA to assess your risk of keratoconus, and if you have a corneal dystrophy.
  • Preemptive: By finding potential problems before symptoms occur, it allows for proactive management and treatment.
  • Painless: A sample is taken from the inside of your cheek with a cotton swab.


  • A family history of corneal problems, vision changes, or a family member had a corneal transplant for unknown reasons.
  • Your doctor sees corneal thinning, or suspicious signs or deposits on your corneas.
  • You have high or progressive nearsightedness or astigmatism.
  • You are considering refractive surgery such as LASIK.

If you’d like to schedule an appointment for the Keratoconus genetic test, book an appointment at Lifetime Optometric.

What are the treatment options for Keratoconus?

  • Glasses
  • Specialty contacts for Keratoconus such as scleral lenses
  • Cornea Collagan Crosslinking: a treatment to stop the progression of keratoconus
  • Corneal Transplant