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Ultraviolet Corneal Crosslinking

What you need to know

Ultraviolet Corneal Crosslinking

  • Corneal cross-linking costs start from $2460 per eye (before rebates)
  • To book an appointment click here

Ultraviolet corneal crosslinking is one of the safest and most effective ways to treat progressive Keratoconus.

Keratoconus is a weakness in the cornea that allows the pressure inside the eye to distort the curve of the front of the cornea. This results in increased astigmatism, blurred vision, and thinning of the cornea.

It is commonly found in people with conditions that cause itchy eyes such as hay fever, eczema, and allergies.  Eye rubbing is a risk factor for developing keratoconus and its progression. It is also more likely to progress in younger patients. While patients can have a genetic predisposition to the disease it is often random.

Keratoconus is not curable but often stabilises naturally by the early 30s. Glasses or rigid gas permeable contact lenses are generally the first treatment option for patients with mild keratoconus. Patients with moderate keratoconus who are at risk of worsening or who are worsening are often recommended ultraviolet corneal crosslinking. One of the safest and most effective ways to treat keratoconus, crosslinking stiffens the cornea, slowing or stopping the progression of the disease. The procedure involves applying a dye to the cornea followed by an ultraviolet laser. This creates a reaction within the cornea leading collagen fibres to “crosslink” and strengthen the cornea.

UV crosslinking takes about 60 minutes and is not a painful procedure. In the rare event the condition continues to progress, the treatment can be repeated. In some cases, your doctor may use a combination of crosslinking, kerarings, and intraocular lenses to treat the condition. Patients with advanced keratoconus that don’t respond to crosslinking or keraring surgery may require a corneal transplant.

What to expect from your consultation with Hunter Laser Vision

During your consultation:

Our team will:

  • review your medical history and perform a thorough eye examination.
  • take scans of your cornea to determine its shape and thickness.
  • check your intraocular pressure.
  • determine whether your keratoconus is progressing and make a surgical recommendation.
  • provide you with a quotation and book a surgery date.
  • discuss post-operative recovery and follow-up appointments.

Please note:

  • consultations can take up to 2 hours.
  • you must not wear contact lenses for 2 weeks prior to your consultation or surgery
  • your pupils may be dilated therefore you will require someone to drive you home.
  • it can take 3 hours for vision to return to normal.

The surgery and post-operative care

  • You can expect to be at the surgery for 3 hours.
  • No contact lens wear for 2 weeks prior to surgery.
  • No make-up on the day of surgery.
  • Wear comfortable warm clothing with no loose fibres.
  • On arrival, you may be given anti-anxiety medication.
  • Corneal cross-linking surgery normally takes around 60 minutes.
  • You may be required to attend a post-operative appointment the day after your procedure.
  • 3-7 days post-operatively you will have your bandage contact lens removed.
  •  2 weeks and 2 months post-operative appointments are included in your surgical fee.
  • We suggest you take a week off work.
  • For two weeks after the surgery stay out of dirty, dusty environments.
  • You should keep the area dry; showering is fine, but no swimming.
  •  Full visual recovery normally takes 6-8 weeks.

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RANZCO - The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists - The Leaders in Collaborative Eye Care
ASO - Australian Society of Ophthalmologists

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