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What is Corneal Transplant?
This is a procedure to replace a damaged cornea with either an entire donated cornea, donated corneal tissue or part of a donated cornea. A corneal transplant is carried out to improve sight or relieve pain.
What are the types of Corneal Transplant?
The most common Corneal Transplant procedures are:
What surgeon performs Corneal Transplant?
Corneal transplant is carried out by an ophthalmologist surgeon.
Duration of procedure/surgery: The corneal transplant procedure takes between 1 and 2 hours.
Days admitted: None. The corneal transplant usually takes place on an outpatient basis.
Anesthesia: Corneal transplant is most commonly carried out under local anesthesia.
Recovery time depends on the type of surgery.
– It can take up to two years for the eye to fully stabilize and vision to settle down after deep anterior lamellar keratoplasty (DALK).
– Full visual recovery takes up to three months after a DSEK procedure.
– You can usually return to work two to three weeks after the corneal transplant.
– The stitches holding the corneal transplant are left in place for one to three years in order for the cornea to heal into place.
Risks: It is relatively safe but there is a small risk of serious complications.
– Rejection of the donor cornea (according to the UK National Health Service, one in five corneal transplants will be rejected or partially rejected).
– Decreased or blurred vision.
– Infection (the cornea is slow-healing and is at risk of infection during this time).
– Cornea graft failure (according to the UK National Health Service retinal detachment occurs in around one percent of corneal transplant patients).
– Attend follow-up eye exams.
– Use medicated eye drops to prevent infection.
– Avoid rubbing your eyes.
– Avoid hard exercise for a few weeks following a corneal transplant and don’t take part in contact sports.
– Wear an eye patch at night for one to four days following a corneal transplant.
– Wear sunglasses to protect the eyes from glare.