Cornea surgery can restore your vision and prevent further damage if you suffer a traumatic eye injury or have an underlying corneal problem, like Fuchs’ dystrophy or keratoconus. At Central Florida Ophthalmology in Oviedo, Florida, ophthalmologist and cataract and corneal surgeon Dr. Jeffrey R. Golen, MD, specializes in the entire spectrum of cornea surgeries. Dr. Golen is a fellowship-trained corneal surgeon and offers the latest corneal transplantation techniques in addition to other surgical services. Call Central Florida Ophthalmology today to request a cornea surgery consultation, or make your appointment online.
Cornea transplant surgery refers to a family of several operative procedures that replace or repair your cornea –– the transparent tissue at the front of your eye that covers your iris and pupils.
During cornea transplant surgery, Dr. Golen removes your damaged or diseased corneal tissue and replaces it with healthy tissue from the eye of a deceased human donor. This donor tissue may help improve your vision and may also help with pain associated with severe corneal problems.
You may be a candidate for corneal surgery if you’ve been diagnosed with any of the following eye problems:
Dr. Golen offers several types of cornea surgery. The method that Dr. Golen chooses depends on the condition of your cornea and your individual needs. He may suggest:
During this surgery, Dr. Golen removes the entire center portion of your cornea and replaces it with a similar-shaped piece of donor tissue. The donor tissue is typically sutured in place with at least 16 sutures. As this procedure is quite invasive, it has a longer recovery time, and the sutures may need to eventually be removed. Long term, these patients will see best with the aid of a rigid contact lens.
If the innermost layer of your cornea (the endothelium) is damaged or affected by dystrophy, Dr. Golen may recommend this cornea surgery. He removes the damaged portion of your endothelium and replaces it with healthy donor tissue. There are two basic types of endothelial keratoplasty (EK): DSAEK and DMEK.
Both of these surgeries are excellent and modern, but each has a unique role in a cornea practice, and each has its advantages and disadvantages. A corneal specialist like Dr. Golen will be able to best discuss these procedures with you and create a personalized plan for your eye.
After cornea surgery, Dr. Golen covers your eye with a patch and provides at-home care and recovery instructions. Endothelial keratoplasty (EK) corneal transplant surgeries leave the patient with an air or gas bubble in the eye to hold the transplant tissue in place as it heals. This requires the patient to lie on their back, looking up at the ceiling from anywhere between 1 to 4 days. During this period of time, it is recommended that the patient spends 50 minutes of every hour in the proper position, with the remaining ten minutes spent doing required tasks like eating, drinking water, or using the restroom.
It’s normal to experience eye irritation, redness, and increased sensitivity to light after any eye surgery. You may need to avoid certain activities, such as exercise, that might cause you to reinjure your eye.
The day after your operation, you return to Central Florida Ophthalmology for a postoperative visit. At that time, Dr. Golen discusses the eye drops necessary for your recovery, which you should already have in your possession. These medications include antibiotics and corticosteroids. They help fight infection, relieve swelling, and encourage your body’s healing process.
The steroid drops are specifically needed to prevent corneal transplant rejection. Failure to use these drops, or premature cessation of these drops, may lead to corneal transplant rejection or failure.
Call the practice of Dr. Jeffrey Golen today to request a cornea surgery consultation or make your appointment online.