Fuchs’ Dystrophy causes the endothelial cells (inner most cells of cornea) to start dying off. These cells are responsible for pumping fluid out of the eye. When the endothelium cells stop working, the corneal fills up with water, swells and causes blurry vision. Extreme complications include blisters on the cornea that may eventually break and cause eye pain.
Fuchs’ Dystrophy affects 1% of the population and is hereditary. If either parent has the condition, their children have a 50% chance of developing the condition.
FUCHS’ DYSTROPHY SYMPTOMS
- Eye Sensitivity to Light and Glare
- Foggy or Blurred Vision (usually first thing in the morning)
- Eye Pain
- Seeing Halos Around Lights
- Worsening Vision Throughout the Day
- Difficulty Seeing at Night
- Foreign Body Sensation
TREATMENT FOR FUCHS’ DYSTROPHY
If diagnosed early, Fuchs’ Dystrophy can be treated effectively with sodium chloride eye drops. In some cases increased intraocular pressure can worsen symptoms, in which case drops to reduce the pressure in the eyes may be prescribed as well. As the disease progresses, if damage continues to the cornea a corneal transplant may be required or alternative treatments such as DSEK (Descemet stripping endothelial keratoplasty) may be an option.
Eye Physicians of Northampton is pleased to have an ophthalmologist on staff that specializes in corneal diseases like Fuchs’ Dystrophy. Dr. Lauren Shatz is a board certified ophthalmologist with fellowships in corneal disease and surgery. To schedule a consult with our corneal specialist, please contact the office directly.