In middle school, Baylen, a student from Nebraska, began suffering from debilitating headaches that affected his schoolwork and participation in sports and activities. At the end of the summer, his father brought him to their local Walmart in Yankton for a routine back-to-school eye exam.

An optometrist located in the Yankton Walmart noticed that something was not quite right with Baylen’s left cornea. He referred the family to ophthalmologist Dr. John Berdahl in Sioux Falls for more comprehensive testing, including a corneal topography. This comprehensive testing led Dr. Berdahl to diagnose Baylen with keratoconus, a progressive eye disease. Dr. Berdahl recommended FDA approved cross-linking to help slow or halt the progression of this condition.

Since having the procedure, Baylen is now managing his keratoconus by wearing a custom specialized contact lens in his left eye. His headaches are less frequent, and he is back to participating in the activities he enjoys, including basketball and track.

When he got the contact, he walked out of here and he goes, ‘Wow! Look at all the color, Mom.’ Pretty amazing,” said his his mother, Tiffany.

KELO sat down with Baylen and Tiffany and their treating ophthalmologist, Dr. John Berdahl of Vance Thompson Vision, to learn about Baylen’s journey with keratoconus and cross-linking.

To hear more on Baylen’s story and how he’s managing his keratoconus, watch the full video here.

There are risks to receiving cross-linking treatment, including infection keratitis. For more information on FDA approved cross-linking, see Prescribing Information. For more information on keratoconus or to read personal stories like Baylen’s, follow Living with KC on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

The results described on this site are based on data collected regarding short- and intermediate-term efficacy of treatment. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.