Assessment of the Association between In Vivo Corneal Morphogeometrical Changes and Keratoconus Eyes with Severe Visual Limitation

J Ophthalmol. 2019 Sep 22:2019:8731626. doi: 10.1155/2019/8731626. eCollection 2019.


Assessing changes suffered by the cornea as keratoconus progresses has proven to be vital for this disease diagnosis and treatment. This study determines the corneal biometric profile in eyes considered as affected by keratoconus (KC) showing severe visual limitation, by means of in vivo 3D modelling techniques. This observational case series study evaluated new objective indices in 50 healthy and 30 KC corneas, following a validated protocol created by our research group, which has been previously used for diagnosis and characterization of KC in asymptomatic (preclinical) and mild visually impaired eyes. Results show a statistically significant reduction of corneal volume and an increase of total corneal area in the severe KC group, being anterior and posterior corneal surfaces minimum thickness points the best correlated parameters, although with no discrimination between groups. Receiving operator curves were used to determine sensitivity and specificity of selected indices, being anterior and posterior apex deviations the ones which reached the highest area under the curve, both with very high sensitivity (96.7% and 90%, respectively) and specificity (94.0% and 99.9%, respectively). The results suggest that once severe visual loss appears, anterior corneal topography should be considered for a more accurate diagnosis of clinical KC, being anterior apex deviation the key metric discriminant. This study can be a useful tool for KC classification, helping doctors in diagnosing severe cases of the disease, and can help to characterize corneal changes that appear when severe KC is developed and how they relate with vision deterioration.