Corneal Transplants

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Treatment for Damaged Corneas

The cornea is the clear, tissue on the very front part of the eye. Occasionally, either through disease or injury, the corneal tissue is damaged to a point where the cornea must undergo a surgical procedure to be replaced with a clear, healthy donor cornea.

Corneal Transplant Surgery

Most corneal transplants are done while you are awake. The eye area is anesthetized so you will not feel any pain during surgery. You may be given a sedative to reduce anxiety. The tissue for the corneal transplant is taken from a recently deceased person whose family has agreed to donate it. The most common type of corneal transplant is called penetrating keratoplasty. During this procedure, the surgeon removes a small circle-sized piece of your cornea. The donated cornea is stitched onto the opening in your eye. Your doctor will remove the stitches at a later date.

Why the Procedure is Performed

Corneal transplantation is recommended for persons who have:

  • Thinning of the cornea that causes vision problems (keratoconus)
  • Scarring of the cornea from severe infections or injuries
  • Cloudiness of the cornea that causes vision loss (Fuchs dystrophy). Full visual recovery may take up to 1 year.

Most patients with successful corneal transplants will enjoy good vision for many years. Dr. Kent Leavitt is a skilled in corneal transplant surgeon. To see if you are a candidate for this procedure, contact us today to schedule an evaluation.