Corneal Cross Linking

Corneal Cross Linking (CXL) is an eye procedure used to stop or slow changes in vision caused by corneal issues and to increase the stability of the cornea. It is less invasive than other cornea surgery options.

CXL therapy is not considered a vision correction procedure and will not eliminate the need for glasses or contact lenses.

Crosslinking Treatment Overview

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  • How Does Corneal Cross Linking Work?

    The Corneal Cross-Linking procedure uses UV light combined with a Vitamin B2 solution that results in a photochemical reaction that creates new stable bridges between the cornea collagen fibers resulting in a stronger cornea. The entire procedure will take around 45 minutes to complete. A contact lens is then placed on the eye to protect the cornea. This is usually removed the following day. Your vision in the treated eye could be blurry after the treatment and the full result may not be reached for up to six months. In some cases, a more stable cornea will allow the patient to have one of the different types of refractive surgery that can eliminate or reduce the need for glasses or contact lenses.

  • Who is eligible for Corneal Cross Linking

    The eye doctors at ICON Eyecare are currently treating patients 12 years old and older who show indications for Corneal Cross Linking.

    CXL is also considered safer than having a corneal transplant as it less invasive and there is no risk of a rejection of a transplanted cornea. However, corneal cross linking is a medical procedure and there are risks with any procedure. Your surgeon will discuss those risks with you in detail before getting started.

  • CXL Therapy to Strengthen the Cornea

    The Corneal cross linking procedure is used in the treatment of corneas that display a weakness or a compromise in their structural integrity. Keratoconus, Pellucid Marginal Degeneration, and Corneal Ectasia are a few of the eye conditions that may benefit from cross linking therapy.

    CXL has grown in popularity as it is a minimally invasive procedure. The purpose of the treatment is to slow and possibly halt the progression of the aforementioned eye conditions. It may even help patients avoid the need for a corneal transplant and allow patients to use glasses or contact lenses once again.

  • Corneal Collagen Cross Linking Therapy

    The cornea is the outermost clear portion of the front of the eye. It is composed of different types of tissue which allows it to maintain its shape and fulfill its function. One of the essential components of the cornea is collagen. Normally there are cross-links between the collagen fibers which are responsible for the structural integrity of the cornea. These links allows the cornea to bulge outwards but only to a degree that allows for optimal vision. Some eye conditions, such as keratoconus affect the collagen in the eye, interfering with this optimal focus.

    Corneal collagen cross linking is used to treat keratoconus at the root of the problem. By applying riboflavin drops to the eye followed by UVA (ultraviolet A) light exposure, the cross linking abnormality in keratoconus can be strengthened. Riboflavin is a type of vitamin B2 that is a normal part of the human diet. When applied as drops and then exposed to UVA light, it reacts in a way that leads to the formation of new cross-links between the collagen fibers in the cornea.

  • FDA-Approved Corneal Cross Linking

    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved epi-off cross linking as a treatment for keratoconus and ectasia in April 2016, following numerous studies across the globe that validated the procedure’s efficacy. Cross linking is also recognized and approved by international regulatory authorities as a treatment for keratoconus.

  • Cost of Corneal Cross Linking

    Corneal crosslinking, in some cases, may be covered by your health insurance plan if deemed medically necessary for the treatment of keratoconus. However, in the event that your procedure is not covered my insurance, ICON Eyecare offers a variety of financing options to help patients afford the procedure. The comprehensive fee quoted at the time of consultation will include postoperative visits at one-day, one week, one month, three months and six months.

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