Causes and risk factors for keratoconus
The exact cause of keratoconus is not yet known, but it is thought to be a mixture of genetic and environmental factors.
There are a number of factors which increase your risk of developing keratoconus:
If there is a history of keratoconus in your family, you are at greater risk of developing the condition yourself. Approximately 1 in 10 people with keratoconus have a parent with the condition.
People with certain conditions, including Down syndrome, retinitis pigmentosa, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, Marfan syndrome, hay fever and asthma, are more likely to develop keratoconus.
Excessive eye rubbing is associated with the development of keratoconus. As such, people with other conditions which cause itchy eyes (like hay fever or allergies) are more likely to develop the condition
Chronic eye inflammation
Constant inflammation of the eyes (which can be brought about by allergies or irritants) can increase your risk of developing keratoconus.
Find out how Assistive Technology helps to manage tasks made difficult by low vision and blindness.
Read nextHow is Keratoconus Diagnosed?