5 Eye Conditions That Pose a Serious Threat to Your Vision

Diseases affecting the cornea can significantly impact eye health. Here’s how they’re diagnosed.

5 Corneal Diseases That Can Cause Serious Damage To Your Eyes
5 Corneal Diseases That Can Cause Serious Damage To Your Eyes

The eyes stand out as a vital part of the human anatomy, offering us the gift of sight and the ability to navigate daily life with clarity. However, any damage to the eyes, whether through disease, disorder, or accidents, can significantly impair both vision and quality of life. Therefore, maintaining optimal eye health is paramount.

The cornea, acting as a protective barrier, plays a crucial role in ensuring clear vision by warding off harmful particles. Yet, despite its resilience, the cornea is susceptible to various diseases that can compromise its function. These conditions, aptly termed corneal diseases, can have profound effects on vision and overall eye health.

Functioning as a shield against germs, dirt, and harmful particles, the cornea also serves to filter out damaging UV rays. Its integrity is essential for proper light refraction, enabling us to perceive the world around us accurately. Any damage to the cornea, regardless of its cause, can precipitate the onset of several corneal diseases.



According to Dr. Hemant Todkar, a Senior Ophthalmologist at Ruby Hall Clinic Pune, Keratitis involves the infection of the eyes, leading to corneal swelling. Typically, when bacteria, fungi, or other microorganisms invade the eye, they can cause injury to the cornea and potentially affect the entire eye. This injury triggers inflammation, which may escalate to corneal infection and ulceration. Keratitis can also manifest in individuals who wear contact lenses and fail to maintain proper eye hygiene.

Common symptoms of keratitis include:

  • Discharge from the cornea
  • Eye pain
  • Blurred vision
  • Sensitivity to light


This progressive eye condition involves the thinning of the cornea, leading to a change in its shape over time. The cornea’s curvature becomes altered, potentially resulting in nearsightedness and irregular astigmatism. Keratoconus can also cause vision loss and scarring.

Several factors contribute to the development of keratoconus:

  • Hereditary or genetic predisposition, often with a family history of the condition
  • Aggressive rubbing of the eyes
  • Prolonged use of contact lenses
  • Allergic reactions, such as conjunctivitis, eczema, or hay fever
  • Other eye conditions, like retinopathy
  • Presence of certain systemic diseases, such as Addison’s disease or Down syndrome

While contact lenses can help manage keratoconus in its early stages, long-term management typically necessitates medical intervention.


Ocular herpes, also known as eye herpes

Herpes is often associated with skin conditions, but it can also affect the eyes, known as ocular herpes. It’s a viral infection caused by HSV-1, or herpes simplex virus type 1. Symptoms include cold sores on the cornea or outer surface of the eyes, which can worsen scarring and potentially result in temporary or permanent vision impairment. While there’s no cure for this condition, it can be managed using antiviral medications.

Ocular herpes, also known as eye herpes

Herpes zoster, commonly known as shingles

Shingles, a recurrence of the chickenpox virus, can manifest in various body parts, including the eyes, if the virus reactivates. This reactivation can lead to eye pain and blistering. While corneal lesions often resolve on their own, antiviral treatment can expedite healing. Severe inflammation may necessitate prompt medical attention. Preventive measures such as keeping eyes clean, especially after returning home, and maintaining proper eye care, particularly for contact lens wearers, can reduce the risk of corneal infections.