A cornea transplant, also known as keratoplasty, is the replacement of the clear, dome-shaped surface of the eye with corneal tissue from a donor. The cornea is responsible for focusing light that enters the eye to produce clear vision. Our doctor may recommend a cornea transplant if you’re experiencing vision loss and/or pain caused by a damaged or diseased cornea.
Conditions That Require a Cornea Transplant
Several diseases and conditions of the cornea can be resolved with a transplant procedure. The most common examples include keratoconus, a condition in which the cornea bulges out from the eye; scarring caused by infection or injury; clouding, swelling, or thinning of the cornea; inherited conditions such as Fuchs’ dystrophy; corneal ulcers; or complications from a previous eye surgery.
What to Expect
When our doctor decides you are a candidate for a cornea transplant, donor corneas are often readily available. This is an outpatient procedure performed in the comfort of our office in Wilmington. Our surgeon will remove the diseased portion of the cornea and replace it with the donor corneal tissue.
A cornea transplant is a safe and effective procedure. Risk for complications is reduced by carefully following discharge instructions. Our doctor can prescribe drops to reduce infection, swelling, and discomfort. In some cases, an eyepatch may be recommended to facilitate healing. While you can return to normal activities, you’ll need to be careful to protect your eye. You’ll also need to see our doctor for follow-up visits.
Results of a Cornea Transplant
Most patients find that their vision is partially to fully restored after a transplant procedure. Follow-up procedures that correct astigmatism and other eye problems can improve vision further. You may need to wear glasses or contact lenses after having this procedure, depending on the situation.
If you’re experiencing problems with your vision, see our doctor at Live Oak Ophthalmology right away. Signs of a problem with the cornea may include pain in the affected eye, blurred or reduced vision, pronounced light sensitivity, redness or inflammation in the affected eye, and more generalized symptoms such as headache, nausea, and fatigue. During an appointment at our office in Wilmington, our doctor will conduct a thorough examination to diagnose the cause of cornea problems and determine whether you’re a candidate for a transplant procedure. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!