Superoxide Dismutase and Keratoconus
By Lyle Silversmith
Born in 1947, I was diagnosed with keratoconus at about age six or seven (this contrasts with a report at a lecture by a surgeon who claimed he had done 5,000 transplants and that the youngest age of onset he had seen was in a teenager).
Many doctors had told my parents to teach me braille while I could still see, until, at age 11, Dr. P (in Manhattan) asked: "Why isn't he wearing contact lenses?"
As a child I rubbed my eyes extremely often. I have allergic rhinitis and other allergies.
I have Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, most noticeably in my thumb joints.
Blood tests taken 30 years ago revealed I had extremely low levels of superoxide dismutase. I believe this genetic defect was also a cause of my mother's bulbar amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.
In 1984 I had the first transplant, then an experimental trapezoidal keratotomy, then a transplant in my right eye (with an unnecessary and additionally disturbing iridectomy), and then in 1987 another transplant in my left eye (by Dr. R.T). I have read and been told that transplants last for an average of about 10 years; it is now 24 years since my last transplant.
Other than contact lenses, cataract removal and astigmatic correcting lens implants with corneal incisions (by Dr. R.M) was the most beneficial procedure in improving my vision. At the time of this procedure, my corneal cell count had been down to 500. After being told my Dr. M in 2007 that my corneas would soon reject as my corneal count fell, I added several collagen supporting nutritional supplements to my daily routine. Within a short time afterwards, my cell count was measured by Dr. R.R (Brooklyn) as 750 and then 1,000.
The NKCF, in an audio in November, 2010, recommended that KC patients supplement with the amino acids lysine and proline, and the minerals copper, zinc, and manganese. These 3 minerals are the basic constituents of superoxide dismutase.
Missing from the KC treatment regimen are eye drops made up of S.O.D. and lysine-proline. Since listening to this audio, I have added these oral supplements to my daily regimen. Because these eye drops would contain naturally occurring nutrients, their creation and distribution would not require F.D.A. approval. Other enzymes (e.g., catalase) missing or diminished in the KC patient should also be added to the eye drops.