Cornea Procedures

h-visionCorrection

At your local Ogden opthamologist, we provide high quality vision care to ensure your eyes are healthy and you can see clearly. Our eye doctors will care for each aspect of your eye, especially if you have experienced damage to the cornea or if you have injured the cornea in some way.

The cornea is the dome-shaped clear protective barrier of the eye. It keeps germs, dust and other harmful particles from entering the eye, and also helps filter out some of the sun’s ultraviolet rays. The cornea has five layers and plays a major role in vision. Country Hills Eye Center will ensure your cornea is healthy and functioning properly, and if it is not, we will treat it appropriately with a cornea procedure. 

Two Most Common Cornea Procedures

The cornea can become damaged due to infection, injury, illness, or complications from laser vision corrective surgeries like LASIK. As a result, vision problems occur. Corneal transplant surgery and cross-linking can effectively treat corneal problems and are the two most common cornea procedures. 

What to Expect with a Corneal Transplant 

Corneal transplant surgery, also known as keratoplasty, is a highly successful procedure. It can restore vision and relieve pain. The first step to beginning a corneal transplant is to be put on a waiting list at a local eye bank for a donor eye. The United States has a very refined donor system, so this process generally only takes a couple of weeks. Following a few tests on the donor eye to ensure optimal health and clarity of the eye, your eye doctors will prep you for surgery.

A corneal transplant is routinely performed on an outpatient basis and only requires a local anesthetic (numbing eye drops). You may also be given a sedative to help you relax. The most common type of corneal transplant is penetrating keratoplasty. Once the eye is numb, your Ogden opthamologist will carefully remove a button-shaped section of tissue from your cornea and replace it with an identical button-shaped section from the donor eye. The entire surgery can take up to two hours.

Corneal Transplant Recovery

Post surgery, you will wear a protective shield over the eye until it is fully healed. Recovering from a corneal transplant can take up to a year. Heavy exercise and/or lifting should be avoided for quite a few weeks following surgery. You will be prescribed eye drops and/or oral medicines to prevent infection, pain and swelling. Depending on how well your eye is healing, your stitches will be removed three to 17 months after the surgery.

Possible Complications with Corneal Transplant

While the success rate for corneal transplants is high, there are some complications to consider. It is important to remember the four warning signs to prevent corneal transplant rejection:

  • Redness
  • Intense sensitivity to light
  • Decreased vision
  • Pain

If you experience any of the above symptoms after your surgery, even up to several years following your surgery, please contact Country Hills Eye Center immediately. There are medications and vision care available to help reverse the rejection process. In the event that the donor transplant does fail, you can receive another corneal transplant; however, the rejection rate only increases with the number of transplants you have.

After Corneal Transplant Recovery

Your vision will progressively improve up to one year after your surgery. Glasses or contact lenses will still be necessary to correct nearsightedness and astigmatism. You should wait until your stitches are removed before you fill an eyeglass or contact lens prescription because your vision will change for the first few months post-surgery. Once your eye has completely healed, laser vision corrective surgery may be performed to help improve your vision and reduce your dependency on glasses or contact lenses.

Corneal Cross-linking (CXL)

Corneal cross-linking (CXL) is a procedure that can treat keratoconus and other corneal diseases. Keratoconus causes the cornea to thin and develop a cone-like bulge. As the condition progresses, vision becomes distorted.

CXL is minimally invasive and can be performed in the office. During the procedure, riboflavin vitamin B2 drops are placed on the surface of your eye. Then an ultraviolet light is applied to the eye to stabilize and strengthen the cornea. CXL prevents further vision loss. There are two types of CXL:

  • Epithelium-off: The epithelium (thin outer layer of the eye) is removed so that the riboflavin drops can easily reach the tissue of the cornea.
  • Epithelium-on: The epithelium is not removed, but the process is the same.

CXL can be performed in combination with other procedures.

Corneal Cross-Linking Recovery

Our eye doctors will prescribe you eye drops and medication to help your eye heal. Avoid rubbing and/or bumping your eye. Early treatment is most effective at stopping the progression of keratoconus.

Schedule an Eye Exam with Your Ogden Eye Doctor Today!

To ensure your eyes and corneas are healthy and working properly, you should continue to have routine eye exams by our Ogden eye doctors. This way, we can detect any eye problems or cornea damage early and reduce the need for extensive treatment. Contact us at Country Hills Eye Center today to schedule an appointment, or request an appointment online. We look forward to helping protect your vision! 

Thank you for trusting us with your vision care.