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Keratoconus Treatment London

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At a glance:

Keratoconus Treatment



Blurred vision, sensitivity to light, changes in eyeglass or contact lens prescription


Diagnosed through the keratoconus corneal screening


Corneal Collagen Cross Linking (CLX)

Keratoconus Treatment

Our clinic operates as a private surgery and is not affiliated with the NHS (National Health Service)

What is Keratoconus? 

Keratoconus is a condition that affects the cornea, the clear front surface of the eye. It is characterised by the thinning and bulging of the cornea, causing it to adopt a cone-like shape. This irregular shape leads to distorted vision and various visual problems. 

The development of keratoconus is mainly influenced by genetic predisposition and environmental factors. Individuals with a family history of the condition are commonly affected. Environmental triggers, such as excessive eye rubbing and prolonged exposure to ultraviolet light can also aggravate Keratoconus. It usually manifests during puberty and continues to progress until the early thirties. 

The most occurring symptoms of keratoconus are: 

  • Blurred or distorted vision 
  • Increased sensitivity to light and glare 
  • Frequent changes in eyeglass prescription 
  • Ghosting or multiple images 
  • Eye strain and discomfort 
  • Difficulty with night vision 


Why Should You Undergo Keratoconus Treatment?


  • Keratoconus treatment corrects the irregular shape of the cornea, leading to improved vision and reduced visual problems. 
  • Treatment options such as corneal collagen cross-linking (CXL) help stabilise the cornea and slow the progression of keratoconus, reducing the need for frequent changes in eyeglass prescription. 
  • Early intervention and treatment help prevent the condition from progressing and causing more severe visual impairment. 
  • Treatment can significantly improve the overall quality of life for individuals affected by this condition. 

keratoconus treatment

How Long Do the Results Last?

Keratoconus treatment has been shown to be successful in halting the disease progression because of keratoconus in well over 90% of patients with progressive disease. 

The duration of the results achieved from keratoconus treatment can vary depending on the specific case. It is important to consider this and discuss it with your healthcare provider to better understand the expected outcome and any potential long-term effects. 



When Should You See a Doctor? 

The initial signs of keratoconus are often subtle, but the symptoms will become more pronounced as the condition progresses. In its early stages, Keratoconus can be treated with glasses and contact lenses, but they do not prevent the condition from progressing further. If you’re experiencing increased light sensitivity, frequent changes in eyeglass or contact lens prescription, and a decline in visual acuity, you will need to seek medical evaluation. 

Clinica London is a leading provider of Keratoconus treatment in London. Our highly skilled corneal surgeons, led by Mr Sajjad Ahmed, specialise in diagnosing and treating this condition. With our expertise and experience, you can expect exceptional care and achieve optimal outcomes. 

Keratoconus Treatment 

Corneal Collagen Cross Linking (CLX) 

Corneal Collagen Cross Linking (CXL) aims to stabilise the thinning of the cornea and slow down the progression of the condition. During the CXL procedure, a special solution of riboflavin (vitamin B2) is applied to the cornea, which is then activated using ultraviolet light. This process helps to strengthen the collagen fibres in the cornea, making it more rigid and preventing further thinning and bulging. 

CXL is a successful treatment for keratoconus, particularly in its early stages. It can help to improve vision and reduce the need for frequent changes in eyeglass prescription or contact lens fittings. 

Portrait of closeup on eyes

Preparing for the procedure

Before undergoing the Corneal Collagen Cross Linking (CXL) procedure, you should stop wearing contact lenses for a specified period of time before the procedure. Your ophthalmologist will provide you with specific instructions based on your situation. 

Since your vision may be temporarily affected after the procedure, arrange for someone to drive you home. Inform your ophthalmologist about any prescription or over-the-counter medications you are taking. They will advise you whether you need to continue or temporarily stop any medications before the procedure. 

During the procedure

The corneal surgeon at Clinica London performs the CXL procedure using local anaesthetic eye drops. CXL treatment involves removing the thin surface layer of the cornea called the epithelium. 

This procedure stimulates the development of new corneal collagen cross-links. These cross-links cause the collagen fibrils to become shorter and thicker, resulting in a stiffer and stronger cornea. 

At Clinica London, Cross-Linking (CXL) is performed as an outpatient procedure by the Consultant Corneal Eye Surgeon with the assistance of a senior nurse. We offer an accelerated version of CXL known as ‘epithelium off’ or ‘rapid’ CXL. This procedure reduces the treatment time by delivering the same amount of UV light energy in eight minutes compared to the standard CXL, which takes 30 minutes. 

Does the Treatment Hurt?

The CXL procedure is generally well-tolerated and considered to be relatively painless. However, it is normal to experience some discomfort in the first 24 hours following the procedure. This discomfort can range from mild to moderate and may include sensations of stinging, burning, or a foreign body sensation in the eye. 

To help manage any discomfort, we provide our patients with a combination of antibiotic eye drops, anti-inflammatory drops, and lubricating eye drops. The discomfort after the procedure is temporary and should gradually subside within a few days. 

side view of elderly woman eye

Recovery & Aftercare 

After the procedure, a soft contact lens bandage is placed on the eye to protect the healing process. This bandage will remain in place until the surface of the eye has fully healed, which takes around seven days. 

Many patients may experience soreness and grittiness for a few days, as well as light sensitivity. These symptoms can be relieved with the use of eye drops and wearing dark glasses. 

It is recommended to take at least a week off from work or study after the procedure. Follow-up appointments will involve vision and eye pressure checks, as well as additional corneal topography (Pentacam scan) to measure the thickness and shape of the cornea. 


Photo: Pentacam scan performed at Clinica London showing early keratoconus. Copywrite Jemma Watts.

Know The Risks of CXL TREATMENT

Corneal Collagen Cross Linking (CXL) is generally a safe procedure, but like any medical intervention, it carries some risks and potential side effects. 

Although rare, there is a small risk of developing an infection after the CXL procedure. Some patients may experience corneal haze, which is a cloudy appearance of the cornea. This is usually temporary and can be managed with prescribed eye drops. 

While the primary goal of CXL is to stabilise the cornea and prevent further progression of keratoconus, changes in vision may occur. This can include temporary fluctuations in visual acuity or changes in prescription. 

close up image of female face


Mr Sajjad Ahmed is a highly experienced and skilled corneal specialist at Clinica London, where he focuses on providing comprehensive treatment for patients with keratoconus. He specialises in the use of corneal cross-linking (CCL) to strengthen the cornea and improve the vision of individuals affected by this condition. Mr Ahmed is also skilled in performing corneal graft transplants, specifically endothelial keratoplasty (DMEK/DSAEK). This procedure is used to treat corneal endothelial cell failure, a condition that can occur as a result of keratoconus or other corneal diseases. 

Mr Sajjad Ahmad

Mr Sajjad Ahmad

Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon
Cornea & External Eye Diseases, Cataract, Keratoconus & Refractive Surgery Specialist

Our clinic operates as a private surgery and is not affiliated with the NHS (National Health Service)


How much does Keratoconus treatment cost?

TreatmentPrice range
Corneal Collagen Cross-Linking – Unilateral From £2200
Corneal Collagen Cross-Linking – Bilateral From £3200
Corneal Transplantation (Graft) From £12000 per eye 
The Keratoconus corneal screening From £300 
Consultation FeesNot Included

Initial consultation fees are not included.

Keratoconus FAQS

Keratoconus does not result in complete blindness. However, it can lead to considerable vision impairment, characterised by irregular astigmatism, blurred or poor vision, myopia (short-sightedness), glare, and in certain instances, an extreme sensitivity to light.  

These symptoms can impact your ability to see clearly and perform daily activities that require visual acuity. 

Keratoconus, a condition characterised by the thinning and bulging of the cornea, cannot be effectively treated through natural remedies alone. Although the disease is known to progress over time, it is important to seek medical intervention to manage and treat keratoconus effectively.

Medical treatments such as corneal cross-linking, intrastromal corneal ring segments, and a corneal transplant may be recommended by healthcare professionals to address the progressive nature of the disease and improve visual outcomes for individuals with keratoconus. Avoiding eye rubbing may have a role in slowing down the progression of keratoconus in young patients until medical treatment is sought. 

Keratoconus is caused by genetics and can occur in up to one in 450 people. It is more common in non-Caucasians and can be triggered by eye trauma, often resulting from persistent and aggressive rubbing of the eye in individuals with atopic eye disease. Keratoconus is also associated with other eye diseases, such as vernal keratoconjunctivitis (a type of childhood allergic eye disease), retinitis pigmentosa, and retinopathy of prematurity. 

Award Winning Clinic in London

Clinica London is a leading ophthalmology and dermatology medical clinic. It has a sense of passion for helping patients. The clinic’s consultants are highly skilled professionals who have received British, European, and international awards in their respective fields. Clinica is honest and offers transparent treatment advice in a relaxed and comfortable environment.


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