A mid-size option between corneal GPs and traditional scleral lenses—corneoscleral contact lenses (CScL)—may be a healthy and safe alternative for keratoconus patients, a new study claims.

In this investigation, Spanish researchers analyzed the changes in corneal biomechanical parameters of keratoconic eyes with and without intracorneal ring segment (ICRS) implants after one year of CScL wear.

The study included 74 eyes of 74 patients and divided them into three groups: healthy subjects (29 eyes), keratoconic patients fitted with CScL (20 eyes with ICRS implants), and keratoconic subjects not fitted with the implants (25 eyes). Researchers evaluated corneal hysteresis, corneal resistance factor and corneal-compensated intraocular pressure before fitting CScL and after one year of CScL wear. In addition, they also recorded endothelial cell count and central corneal thickness.

Researchers found the corneal biomechanical parameters were lower in keratoconic corneas than in healthy ones. Additionally, keratoconic eyes with ICRS implants had lower corneal hysteresis, central corneal thickness and endothelial cell count values than eyes without the implant. The study noted the data for corneal-compensated intraocular pressure was similar in all groups. After one year of CScL wear, no statistically significant differences in corneal biomechanical parameters were reported in any of the groups, although slight differences (0.13–0.27mm Hg) were found.

The viscoelasticity properties of the cornea did not change significantly when wearing corneoscleral contact lenses for one year, and therefore, these lenses seem to be safe and healthy and are a reasonable alternative option for keratoconus management,” researchers said.

Porcar E, Montalt JC, E España-Gregori, et al. Impact of corneoscleral contact lens usage on corneal biomechanical parameters in keratoconic eyes. Eye & Contact Lens. February 4, 2019. [Epub ahead of print].