Keratoconus: why I squint and struggle!

The day before my 21st birthday I found out what was wrong with me. Why I squinted and struggled in school all semester, why light suddenly bothered me, why I kept missing the tennis ball.

Keratoconus. I try not to Careatoconus.

I tried to live my life with no excuses, never letting my vision limit my potential or hold me back from achieving my goals. I wore the scleral lenses, no matter how much they hurt or how red my eyes were. Limited vision is better than no vision I told myself.

Keratoconus has complicated my life in more ways than my closest friends and family even know. But I have hope.

I went to career recruitment events with red eyes and I was always insecure that the recruiters thought I was high. Professors called on me to answer questions on the board that were too small for me to read, even when I sat in the front row. I had to make excuses to my friends why I could never drive at night or why I had to so frequently fix my contacts (bubbles).

Awkward situations, uncomfortable situations, I didn’t ask for situations. The hour drives to contact fittings and ophthalmologist appointments. The halos and headaches. Cornea scratching and itching.

Is it getting worse? What do you think I should do? Two years and seven ophthalmologists later I have never really received a straight answer. They told me maybe Intacs, so why not? No change. Oh, remarkable change in the last six months, what do you recommend? Hmmm, maybe its time for the cornea transplant. Why not? It has been three months and time will tell.

I’m moving to a new city soon, with a new job. Starting over is hard for everyone, but my limited vision makes me scared for the future. Will the long hours of public accounting be too strenuous for my eyes? Do I have someone to depend on if something happens to my vision? Will I embarrass myself in the professional world by not being able to judge depth?

Though keratoconus has complicated my life in more ways than my closest friends and family even know, I have hope. I believe that one day I will see better than I do today, with less pain. I have hope that those around me will be understanding as I open up to them about my vision journey. I have hope that one-day scientists will know definitively what causes this disease.

The above story was shared by Grace Hudgins.

14 comments:

  1. Did you try RGP lenses before the scleral? If not I suggest piggy backing the RGP with a soft lense. The soft lense provides a cushion and makes it more comfortagle to wear. Good luck, Sarah

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  2. i do have squint only because of Keratoconus.pls do share ur image of eye or contact..

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  3. http://www.boxerwachler.com/dr-brian

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  4. "Though keratoconus has complicated my life in more ways than my closest friends and family even know, I have hope. I believe that one day I will see better than I do today, with less pain. I have hope that those around me will be understanding as I open up to them about my vision journey. I have hope that one-day scientists will know definitively what causes this disease."- thats true..very true..and, of course we all are waiting for the day when we will be able to see like normal peoples. Keep on! And good luck !

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  6. https://vimeo.com/70517460

    This webinar answers most of the questions I had in 2013, as I was losing my vision to Keratoconus.
    Diagnosed in 1988, wore RGP contacts for 25 years. Treated by Dr Brian Boxer Wachler in 2013 with INTACS and Holcomb C3R Collagen Cross-Linking EPI-ON and 'CK' Conductive Keratoplasty in 2014/15 (my choice) to clear up slight blurriness rather than wearing glasses.
    Vision went from 20/100 to 20/40 left & 20/32 right. Initial 3 day visit to California has changed my life and I highly recommend Dr Brian Boxer Wachler and his procedures.

    310-860-1900 Boxer Wachler Vision Institute

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  7. I had crosslinking with Dr. Brian 2 years ago. My vision has been a constant struggle since I was 17. I had a transplant in my left eye 12 years ago and have finally been able to have relatively stable vision after my crosslinking. It's a gift. I can't see perfectly, but I am not in pain and feel less fearful of my future. It's worth the trip to LA & the expense!

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  8. I love your story!! I have keratoconus on my right eye and i cant afford the the special lenses they have they run from $750-up. My dad first promis me to get em for me but once he saw the price he changed his mi

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  9. I only wear glasses which are only for my good eye. Its really sad i always ask myself when will i ever see clear again?

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    1. Call 310-860-1900 Boxer Wachler Vision Institute and find out what Dr. Brian suggests for you. Even though we have Keratoconus, it affects each one of us differently based on the progression of this disease. The sooner you do something about it the better. Don't wait...wish I didn't.
      Dr. Brian's procedures are non invasive and it was well worth it. Happy I made the decision in 2013 !

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  10. I recommend wearing computer glasses while at work, I used to be very susceptible to infection because I have KC too and wear sclerals. The glasses give my eyes the energy to last a full work day and not get periodic infections

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  11. I recommend highly Laserfit Sclerals by Dr Greg Gemoules. An invasive procedure should be the last resort always
    Laserfit lenses use a unique,patented technology for better vision and excellent comfort and is a safe non invasive process

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  12. I understand your situation. Although we know that our family loves and support us but they don't understand what we go through.
    In my country there are very few specialists for Keratoconus. I underwent cross linking but my eye sight seems to be detoriating.
    I do hope there is a cure for this as life gets really frustrating living with Keratoconus.

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