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Glossary

Always under construction - Please let me know if you think of a term that isn't here!

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

A
Acanthamoeba A free living amoeba, which can be found in tap water, making contact-lens wearers particularly susceptible to infection. It has been known to cause keratitis and sometimes, in extreme cases, blindness. Curing the infection can be difficult. Prevention is better than cure.
Aquasil Type of material used to make rigid contact lenses. The inner side is "softer" than a typical RGP lens.
Astigmatism
A visual defect in which the unequal curvature of one or more refractive surfaces of the eye, usually the cornea, prevents light rays from focussing clearly at one point on the retina, resulting in blurred vision.
Atopic
Allergic (e.g. hayfever, dust)
B
Binding
Where the lens "sticks" to the eye
C
CONCTGP
Condition Of Not Contributing To Glossary Page!!!!!!!!
If you have any suggestions for terms on here, please email webmaster@keratoconus-group.org.uk
Cornea
Transparent part of the front of the eye. It's the cornea to blame if you suffer from Keratoconus.
Corneal Graft
A transplant of eye tissue to replace the cornea
D
DALK Deep Anterior Lammelar Keratoplasty. A form of corneal transplant where only the central section of cornea (the stroma) is replaced by the donor's tissue. Often, the front epithelium is replaced also; if it isn't, the host's own cells re-grow to form a new epithelium.
Diopter
Measurement of optical acuity
E
Endothelium The back layer of the cornea. The endothelial cells job is to keep the cornea free of the fluid inside the eye.
Epicon lens
New contact lens for KC
F
Fenestrations Holes in a (scleral) contact lens
G
GPC
Giant papillary conjunctivitis (GPC) presents as multiple large, white bumps on the inside of the upper eyelids. These bumps then rub against the upper edge of the contact lens, causing significant irritation
Graft Another name for a transplant (where it concerns the cornea)
H
Hydrogel
Type of soft lens
Hydrops
Corneal hydrops is a condition commonly associated with advanced Keratoconus, in which a deep layer of the cornea, known as Descemet's membrane, ruptures. The cornea then swells resulting in significantly reduced, blurred, and often foggy vision. The corneal swelling usually resolves over a period of 6 to 8 weeks without any specific treatment, however, visual acuity may be permanently reduced as a result of associated corneal scarring.
I
Intacs Form of surgery where semi-circular devices are implanted into the cornea. They are used to help correct poor vision.
Iris
Coloured part of the eye
K
KC
Keratoconus
KCH
Kent & Canterbury Hospital
Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca The medical term for dry-eye syndrome.
Keratoplasty
The transplantation of a button of a donor cornea to a living person. Penetrating Keratoplasty (PK) replaces a full thickness of cornea; Deep Lamellar Keratoplasty (DALK) replaces a partial thickness.
M
Moorfields
The London Eye Hospital. The London NHS centre of excellence.
P
Photophobic
Extreme sensitivity to light
Piggyback
Method of wearing contact lenses where a soft lens is worn underneath an RGP
PMMA Polymethylmethacrylate. The old-fashioned rigid clear plastic material that non gas permeable contact lenses were made from.
PRK
A form of laser surgery - see Wikipedia's entry
Pupil
Dark part of eye that adjusts (dilates) to light level
R
Refraction Where an optician checks your vision by using a series of different lenses, each lens refracts (bends) light in a different manner. Commonly known simply as the sight test.
Rejection The worst-case scenario with a corneal transplant. This can usually be reversed in the early stages using steroid drops.
Retina The back surface of the eye, on which an image is formed.
RGP
Rigid Gas Permeable
S
Sclera
White of the eye
Scleral lenses
Lenses which cover the white of the eye
Sjögren's syndrome The medical term for an autoimmune condition where "dry-eye is accompanied by dry mouth and dyspareunia/ vaginal dryness. It is associated with
rheumatoid arthritis.
SoftPerm
Hard contact lens with soft skirting. A fusion of a hard RGP and a soft contact lens.
T
Topography
A 3D map of the cornea surface
Transplant (of the cornea) Surgical procedure where the central part of the cornea is removed, and replaced with a healthy cornea from a recently-deceased donor. Also referred to as Keratoplasty.
 

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Page last updated: 11 August, 2011