A corneal ulcer or keratitis is damage to the cornea which is caused by infection or inflammation. Your cornea is the transparent, dome-shaped surface of your eye that accounts for a large part of your eye’s focusing power. This is a potentially blinding condition and is considered an ophthalmic emergency. This condition is often associated with contact lens use or trauma to the eye.
A number of different treatments are available, and if treated early, vision can often be restored. A microscopic specimen may be sent to the laboratory by your doctor to determine the cause of the ulcer. This is a quick and painless procedure. Some types of keratitis heal very slowly and need specialized treatment for an extended period of time. Surgery may be indicated in certain cases. Dr Ballim has a special interest in these conditions and runs a corneal ulcer clinic on a weekly basis, since 2009