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Effects of Corneal Scars and Their Treatment With Rigid Contact Lenses on Quality of Vision

Publication year 2018
Published in Eye and Contact Lens
Authors T.J.T.P. van den Berg, Bram de Jong, Ivanka J E van der Meulen, Johannes M J van Vliet, Ruth Lapid-Gortzak, Carla P Nieuwendaal,
The order of authors may deviate from the original publication due to temporary technical issues.

OBJECTIVES: To study the effects of corneal scars and the treatment of these scars with rigid gas-permeable (RGP) contact lenses on quality of vision including straylight. Visual effects were related to scar characteristics such as size and grade.

METHODS: Straylight and best-corrected visual acuity were measured in 23 patients with corneal scars during and after RGP contact lens wear. Contralateral eyes were used as controls, and age-normal values in case of bilateral scars. Straylight measurements were performed using the compensation comparison method of the Oculus C-Quant instrument.

RESULTS: Scarred eye straylight values were 1.53 log(s) without contact lens and 1.60 log(s) with contact lens (P=0.043). Healthy eyes without contact lens had a mean straylight value of 1.13 log(s), corresponding to age-normal values. Contact lens wear increased straylight in healthy eyes to 1.26 log(s) (P<0.001). Visual acuity improved from 0.66 logarithm of minimal angle of resolution (logMAR) to 0.19 logMAR with contact lens wear in eyes with a corneal scar (P<0.001).

CONCLUSIONS: Corneal scars can have a strong effect on quality of vision by diminishing visual acuity and increasing straylight. The increase in straylight from corneal scars on its own can lead to a serious visual handicap. Contact lens treatment did not improve straylight, but showed a slight worsening. As the recovery of visual acuity with contact lens wear far exceeded straylight increase, contact lenses remain a clinically useful treatment option in most patients with corneal scars.

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