The cornea is the clear, relatively round area covering the front of the human eye. It provides 2/3 of the focusing power of the eye, and its clarity is crucial in maintaining proper sight. Many factors can affect the cornea and disrupt its ability to function properly.
When the cornea loses its clarity from scarring (related to trauma or infection) or swelling (related to inherited eye diseases, injury or swelling) and vision is significantly reduced, a cornea transplant may be necessary to improve sight. Depending upon the reason for loss of corneal clarity, and the patient’s particular circumstances, a full-thickness or a partial-thickness cornea transplant may be considered. Full-thickness and partial thickness cornea transplants are performed in the operating room under local anesthesia with mild sedation. “Matching” of donors and recipients is not necessary, unlike other solid organ transplants.
- PKP (penetrating keratoplasty): this is a full-thickness cornea transplant; typically performed for deep or full-thickness corneal scarring or swelling; The graft is held in place by sutures; recovery period of 6-12 months for most patients.
- DSEK or DMEK: involves replacing only the back (internal) layers of the cornea which have lost cells in this area and can no longer adequately pump the cornea clear with the remaining cells; the graft remains in place by adherence without sutures; recovery is quicker and occurs over 3-12 months, with patients usually seeing better in the early post-op period than PKP patients; strict activity restrictions are required during the first two days post-operatively.
Dr. Peters is a fellowship-trained cornea specialist and if one of these procedures is necessary, he will discuss which procedure is appropriate for you. He performs the procedures and all of the pre- and post-operative care.
Make an appointment for yourself today