Among countless wonders that modern science offers us, there’s one important invention that is easy to miss. Through a simple surgical procedure, it is now possible to replace damaged eye parts with artificial lenses.
You can now even swap out the clouded cornea (the outer lens) with a high-tech transplant. This procedure allows us to cure corneal diseases, which are so common among older people.
In 2019, as the Eye Bank Association of America claims, there were almost 50 thousand corneal transplants manufactured.
What is Cornea Responsible for?
It is merely a dome of transparent tissue in the eye. It is responsible for the protection of more fragile inner parts of the complex system, which is the human eye. Seemingly, it functions by focusing the light stream on the retina, which subsequently transmits the signal to the brain.
In the cornea, there are five layers of flesh that makeup such a complex system. There are numerous scenarios according to which something can be put out of action. If only one of the layers is damaged, you lose the ability to see clearly, which usually results in trouble with reading, driving, and many others.
How can Cornea be Damaged?
As mentioned above, there are a number of possible reasons:
Illness. The most common ones are typically to do with infections or genetic disorders, namely endothelial dystrophy. In severe cases, it can result in vision loss.
Injuries. For such a fragile organ as an eye, all kinds of accidents are extremely dangerous. If an object penetrates the cornea, obviously, it is likely to severely damage the inner eye.
Eye surgeries. It is not only age that weakens the cornea. Surgical procedures, such as ones related to glaucoma, however necessary they may be, are known to damage and compromise the cornea.
Having considered all the factors, it is advisable to get your eyes examined regularly to ensure the health of the corneas.
Advantages of Corneal Transplants
In case the damage delivered to an eye is so severe that it cannot be cured, it is advisable to implant from one up to five layers of the cornea, replacing it completely. Partial-thickness transplants are implanted differently from their full-thickness analogs.
After an implant is inserted, everything will depend on a number of factors.
Ranging from approximately 10 to as many as 60 years, the life of such implants is rather hard to predict, as it is affected by immune system features, resistance to eye medicine, and other factors.