Keratoconus San Diego

Keratoconus San Diego Specialty Clinic

The Keratoconus San Diego Clinic at ReVision Optometry is directed by Brian Chou, OD, FAAO, FSLS, and is conveniently located in central San Diego. 

Dr. Chou is a past recipient of the National Keratoconus Foundation's top optometrist award. His experience in treating keratoconus includes publishing the first U.S. report on Intacs surgery for keratoconus during fellowship training at Jules Stein Eye Institute, UCLA School of Medicine. Subsequently, he served as an FDA clinical investigator of the first SynergEyes hybrid contact lenses for keratoconus. Dr. Chou has written book chapters and numerous articles on keratoconus. He also presents continuing education courses to eye doctors at national meetings on the non-surgical management of keratoconus, and is regularly sponsored by industry to teach the art and science of scleral contact lens prescribing for keratoconus.

More than 125 eye doctors have trusted and referred their keratoconus patients to Dr. Chou, extending to when he established his specialty practice in the north San Diego communities of 4S Ranch and Rancho Peñasquitos. Our clinic is eight miles away from San Diego International Airport, making it easy for patients traveling from other states or internationally. While the average eye care practice may see one or two keratoconus a year, it’s not uncommon for more than half a dozen keratoconus patients to visit our clinic in a day.

The Keratoconus San Diego Clinic at ReVision Optometry is equipped to manage keratoconus with advanced technology including rebound tonometry, automated refraction systems, corneal topography, optical coherence tomography (OCT), pachymetry, genetic testing for keratoconus, and multiple diagnostic contact lens sets -- including certification for EyePrintPRO -- to accommodate even the most severe forms of the disease.  The ReVision Optometry staff is familiar with the nuances of submitting necessary contact lens authorizations for keratoconus to Vision Service Plan and EyeMed Vision Care.  Altogether, our team is dedicated to providing state-of-the-art care to allow you to overcome obstacles posed by your keratoconus.

What Is Keratoconus?

Keratoconus is an eye disease in which the cornea, or the clear front dome of the eye, takes on a distorted shape.  Light passing through the distorted cornea into the eye becomes highly aberrated, causing blurred vision, multiple images, and night vision difficulty.  Eyeglasses and disposable soft contact lenses are often ineffective for restoring good vision while LASIK eye surgery is not safe because the cornea in keratoconus is too thin and weak to sustain tissue removal.

The latest research shows that keratoconus has a genetic link and it may affect as many as 1 in 375 individuals.  Although keratoconus usually begins during the teenage years and progresses before stabilizing on its own by the third to fourth decade of life, it is not always diagnosed early.  This is because as an uncommon eye condition, eye doctors do not always look for keratoconus or suspect keratoconus.  Additionally, some forms of keratoconus are so subtle that advanced diagnostic technology is required for detection.

If keratoconus is detected during adolescence at its earliest stage, corneal cross-linking surgery can slow or halt the progression to minimize deterioration of vision. While corneal cross-linking is directed to prevent further vision loss, specialized rigid surface contact lenses are almost always required to restore vision to the maximal potential. Eye doctors like Dr. Chou have the expertise and experience to prescribe these contact lenses which are not cosmetic but deemed by vision benefit plans as “medically necessary contact lenses.” These rigid surface contact lenses create a smooth artificial light bending surface, covering up the distorted natural cornea in keratoconus.

Although vision rehabilitation with conventional rigid gas permeable contact lenses is straightforward, sustainable wear is often elusive. Regular rigid lens wear is frequently undermined by the instability of the lens on the eye, irritating dust particles getting underneath, and general discomfort related to lens wear. Fortunately, new contact lens technologies – including scleral contact lenses, impression-based prosthetic cover shells and SynergEyes hybrid contact lenses – have made it possible for qualified eye doctors to remedy the common shortcomings of conventional rigid contact lenses.

Keratoconus San Diego Learning Center

Selected Publications on Keratoconus by Dr. Chou

Chou, B., Legerton, J., Trends, challenges and controversies in keratoconus: get updated on the latest discourse on this increasingly relevant topic. Review of Optometry. February 2023: 56-60.

Chou, B., My early experience with genetic testing for keratoconus: repeated results from one patient are oddly different. Review of Cornea & Contact Lenses. February 2022: 12-13.

Chou, B., The ultimate keratoconus referral guide. Eyes on Eyecare. May 6, 2021.

Chou, B., Gelles J. (edited by Shovlin JP). One bird, two stones: here's what's likely to happen when you combine CXL and Intacs to treat keratoconus. Review of Optometry. March 2021: 90.

Chou, B., Onofrey B. "Keratoconus." In Ocular Therapeutics Handbook: A Clinical Manual (Fourth Edition), edited by Onofrey, B, Skorin L, Holdeman N, 700-704, Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer, 2020.

Chou, B., Gelles,J. Does CXL for keratoconus improve contact lens success? Review of Cornea & Contact Lenses. May-June 2019: 28-29.

Chou, B. New tools to tame keratoconus. Review of Optometry. Review of Optometry. April 2019: 56-61.

Chou, B. Keratoconus: transforming a clinical obstacle into a practice opportunity. California Optometry. November/December 2017.

Chou, B. 7 strategies for fitting keratoconus patients. Optometry Times. January 2017: 1-19.

Chou, B. Solving scleral contact lens induced pingueculitis. Review of Cornea & Contact Lenses. November 2016:24-28.

Chou B., Weissman BA. Making sense of the irregular cornea.  Rev Cornea Contact Lenses. April 2010: 14-21.

Chou B. Rigid optics with soft lens comfort: a look at how the technology behind SynergEyes lenses benefits both patients and practitioners.  Contact Lens Spectrum, July 2006: 48-53.

Chou B. Does unilateral keratoconus exist? Rev Optom, March 2006: 65-66.

Boxer Wachler B, Chandra NS, Chou B., Korn TS, Nepomuceno R, Christie JP. Intacs for keratoconus. Ophthalmol. 2003;110:1031-1040.

Chou B., Boxer Wachler B.  Soft contact lenses for irregular astigmatism after laser in situ keratomileusis. J Refract Surg 2001;17:692-695.

Chou B., Boxer Wachler B.  Intacs for keratoconus: a promising new option? Rev Optom, April 2000;137(4):97-98.