Corneal Transplant – Is It Safe?

The cornea, the clear window that we look through on the front of the eye, is one of the most important parts of our eye. It accounts for about two-thirds of the focusing power of the eye. (The lens accounts for the other third.) If the surface of the cornea gets damaged by trauma or infection, it can cause permanent vision problems, making it impossible to see things clearly.

There are a number of circumstances or ailments that can cause damage or infection to your cornea. For instance,
shingles is a viral infection that occasionally infects the eye and causes scarring of the cornea. Anterior corneal dystrophies and keratoconus are other types of corneal diseases that can also damage the cornea and hamper vision.

The cornea has the ability to heal itself after a slight abrasion or trauma without long term consequences. However, it cannot repair itself if an infection sets in and results in corneal scarring. In such cases, a corneal transplant is a relatively safe and effective procedure to restore vision.

Dean R Forgey, MD has had additional training the treatment of corneal conditions, including performing corneal transplant procedures to restore vision. Corneal transplantation requires the removal of the diseased portion of the  cornea and replacing it with a healthy cornea obtained from an eye bank.

Corneal transplantation is an outpatient procedure and you will be able to go home the same day of the surgery. The cornea doesn’t normally have any blood vessels in it, which reduces the risk of rejection, but also causes the corneal transplant to take more time to heal. You will be prescribed eye drops to reduce the risk of infection and rejection. It’s very important that you use these just as instructed. As the cornea heals, you will notice a distinct difference in your vision. It will be clearer and bright again. Glasses or contacts may be necessary to get you your best vision after surgery.

Because the cornea plays such a major role in your ability to see, if you’ve had a corneal infection that’s seriously hampered your vision, having corneal transplant surgery may be your best option to get your vision back.

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