Keratoplasty, or cornea transplant surgery, is used to replace the cornea of a patient with corneal tissue received from a donor. Cornea transplants are effective in restoration of vision, pain reduction, or improving the appearance of a damaged cornea.
Some conditions that are treated using cornea transplant surgery include:
Prior to the procedure, a doctor will administer a sedative and local anesthetic to the patient's eye, so the patient will not feel any pain during the procedure. They will, however, be awake for the duration of the procedure.
With common cornea transplant procedures (penetrating keratoplasty), the surgeon cuts through the entire thickness of the cornea, removing a disc of tissue from the eye. A trephine is used to make this round cut accurately. The new donor cornea tissue is placed in this opening, which is stitched into position using a thin thread. Your surgeon then uses a fine thread to stitch the new cornea into place.
While keratoplasty is a safe procedure, it does carry a risk of the following: