Doctor insights on:
Why Do Some Corneal Transplants Fail
In medicine: a transfer from one body or body part to another of an organ (liver, heart, lung, kidney, pancreas bowel) or tissue (hand, face, hair). The immune system fights foreign invaders (like infections) so it will reject transplants from other people (allotransplants) because they look like infections. So transplants usually require drugs to ...Read more
Overall, yes: There has been a significant change in the way corneal problems are treated over the past 10 years. Instead of requiring a full transplant, only the inside layer of the cornea might have to be exchanged, which allows a much safer and rapidly healing surgery. In some cases a full transplant is required (scarring, keratoconus), and this too is highly successful, usually done by corneal specialists. ...Read more
Corneal transplants: Have multiple purposes and generally they are performed when the benefits outweigh the risks. Most patients do very well, but the surgery does have an extended recovery time and requires frequent follow up. Your eye surgeon will be able to let you know if a corneal transplant is something you will benefit from overall. ...Read more
Corneal transplant: Most transplants are successful technically. After, likeany other transplant, rejections can occur for a number of reasons. However, newer technology has replaced them with procedures called dsek and dlak, both offer similar vision improvement, but shorter and safer recovery period. ...Read more
Improved vision: Corneal transplantation surgery removes a disease and non-transparent cornea, with a clear donor cornea which in most cases will heal in place and restore vision. It requires 6 months to a year to heal properly and the diligent use of eyedrops and regular follow-up with the surgeon who does it. But it can be very satisfying when all goes well. ...Read more
I had corneal transplants when I was in my 30s. I am now 66 and wonder how my corneas will fare as I get older?
Keep regular appts: There is always a risk of graft failure or rejection, so regular check-ups with your ophthalmologist are necessary. The older the corneal grafts become the more likely the risk of corneal edema due to loss of endothelial cells, but loss of endothelial cells occurs naturally to everyone even with natural corneas. Bottomline, keep up your check-ups. ...Read more
Not much pain: There are different types of cornea transplants that can be performed depending on the reason for needing them. The time to recovery and restrictions are different for each type of cornea transplant. Usually there is not any significant pain. Speak to your ophthalmologist more if he/she recommend a cornea transplant for you. ...Read more
Frequent: Corneal transplantation, the replacement of a damaged cornea with a clear one from a donor eye, is a frequently performed procedure - about 20-30, 000 in the usa per year. The healing is prlonged and frequent visits to the surgeon are mandatory during that period. Your transplant surgeon can inform you of your risks and prognosis. ...Read more
Different types: We can currently transplant different layers of the cornea, depending on which area is diseased or damaged. The visual recovery from each type of transplant is different, but there is usually little discomfort. Your corneal surgeon will discuss more details with you depending your condition and the recommended type of transplant. ...Read more
Slow recovery: This is done for corneal disease which obstructs the vision from a variety of causes. A transplant surgeon removes your diseased cornea with a cookie cutter like device and uses the same instrument to remove the donor cornea which is sewn in place. It is usually done under local; there is little or no pain; drops are used for 6-10 months while vision gradually recovers. Usually its good. ...Read more
Corneal opacificatio: When the transparency of the corneal can no longer be maintained or treated, and the cornea is not amendable to other non full-thickness procedures, like DSAEK, then a careful decision for full thickness corneal transplantation is considered. Prognosis for corneal transplantation procedures highly depends on the initial cause (s) of the corneal failure. ...Read more
Rejection: Many potential complications can associated with corneal transplant, either during the surgery or after surgery during recovery period. Hemorrhage inside the eye is the most serious complication during surgery. Rejection of the graft can occur years later. Infection is not common but can occur. Also some diseases can recur in the corneal graft too. ...Read more
Usually work well: It depends on several things such as the cause of the corneal opacification, and the donor tissue source. Patients with keratoconus do very well and can have the donor corneas last decades. If the cause is burns, infections or trauma, there can be vascular ingrowth around the cornea, and the donor tissue may experience some rejection that may require treatment. ...Read more
Trauma and rupture: Common risks are mentioned in other posts, infection, hemorrhage, rejection. One of my biggest concerns is trauma and rupture of the graft in cases where a full thickness penetrating transplant have been performed. The eye is forever fragile and even the slightest blow to the eye can lead to serious injury and blindness. The eye needs glasses to protect it. Risk is much lower in partial grafts. ...Read more
No: With the new partial thickness transplantation technique (dsek), the vision is very poor for the first 2 days as the air bubble in the front of the eye interferes with vision. After this, the vision returns relatively quickly so long as the transplanted tissue is healthy and swelling dissipates, usually 2-12 weeks. ...Read more
Yes, but...: Very unlikely but possible. If the combination of donor tissue, suturing, and your eyeball length work out, it can happen. But I wouldn't expect it, otherwise you might be disappointed. Remember, it's a marathon not a sprint. ...Read more
12-18 months: If all goes well, 12-18 months. Longer if problems are encountered. ...Read more
Depends: The recovery time depends on the type of transplant performed as well as your corneal disease. We can now selectively replace certain layers of the cornea only. The recovery time for vision varies according to which layer is replaced. The time to visual recovery also depends on what your diagnosis is. ...Read more
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