Keratoconus is a condition whose origin has long been unknown. Through our clinical interactions with thousands of keratoconus patients over the years, we strongly believe that the origin of keratoconus may no longer be an enigma, and that eye rubbing is the all-important causative factor for this disease.
Despite the cumulative evidence, it is difficult to formally prove this assertion. For one, it is not possible, due to ethical reasons, to conduct a prospective study where patients are asked to rub their eyes vigorously and repeatedly to determine if keratoconus could be induced. However, it is possible to take advantage of the large number of keratoconus patients seen and monitored at our Institution to study the impact of eye rubbing on not only the genesis of the disease but also on its progression. If our assumption that eye rubbing is responsible for the onset and evolution of the disease is correct, then the cessation of eye rubbing must, at least in the early and moderate forms, arrest the progression of keratoconus.
A novel and effective way of monitoring clinical cases and sharing their progress is to document them prospectively in an open fashion online.
This is what we have done on this website.
The idea of building this keratoconus and eye rubbing portal came about in late 2016. Since then, whenever a patient is newly diagnosed with keratoconus by our team of doctors, or when a patient with known keratoconus presents to us for a routine review, the collection of the necessary clinical data including relevant photos and video recordings for the study is initiated, and the information uploaded to this website.
This website now displays more than 100 cases of keratoconus. Each case is thoroughly analyzed, at inclusion and at subsequent visits. The statistics and percentages reported here will be updated over time, and this series of cases will constitute the core of a future publication in a peer-reviewed medical journal.