To report eyes with keratoconus that progressed during pregnancy.
Seven eyes of 4 patients with progression of keratoconus during pregnancy were included in this study. The mean age of patients and the mean follow-up duration were 29.3 years and 39 months, respectively. Progressive keratoconus was documented with changes in refraction, corneal topography, and rigid gas-permeable lens fitting pattern. Patients with accompanying systemic and ocular diseases associated with keratoconus, uncontrolled atopic disease, and eye rubbing were excluded.
Mean increase in spherical equivalent refraction and simulated keratometry values were 1.4 ± 1.1 and 1.1 ± 0.8 diopters, respectively. In eyes wearing rigid gas-permeable lenses, increase in corneal apical touch and decrease in the base curve radius of the best-fitting contact lens were observed.
Hormonal changes during pregnancy may affect corneal biomechanics negatively, and pregnancy may be a previously unrecognized risk factor for progression of keratoconus. To our knowledge, this is the first study showing pregnancy-induced keratoconus progression in patients with no accompanying disease.