How Much Does Cornea Transplant In India

Many potential patients for surgery are a concern to know about cornea transplant cost In India? The estimated cost of cornea transplant In India usually starts $1000 however, it may go up to as much as $1500. it depends on the hospital charges and the fee charged by the surgeon. This price usually does not cover the post-operational program. Additional costs also involve the diagnostics before the surgery and pre-operational consultations.

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What is Cornea Transplant?

Corneal transplant, also known as a corneal graft or keratoplasty, is the removal of a damaged cornea, replacing it with a healthy cornea from the donor.

What is a cornea?

Your cornea is clear tissue, made up of layers of cells, at the front of your eyeball. A healthy cornea allows light to pass into your eye and helps light focus on your retina (the light-sensitive film at the back of the eye) so that you can see images.

There are 2 types of surgery:

  1. A transplant where the donor cornea is sewn into place using a special microscope and very fine stitches. The stitches will be removed over time (not all at once). After surgery, your vision may not be clear right away. This is normal — it will get better over time.

  2. Tissue is replaced within your eye and an air bubble is placed in your eye. You may have to lie on your back at home for 24 hours (1 day).

What causes cornea problems?

Diseases or injury can make your cornea either cloudy, damaged or out of shape and this prevents the normal passage of light and inability to focus properly causing blurry vision and glare.
A cornea eye can be caused by:

 

  • Keratoconus – thinning of your cornea causes it to become cone-shaped rather than dome-shaped and results in blurred vision.

  • Fuchs’ dystrophy – swollen and cloudy cornea caused by ageing cells in the inner layer of your cornea not working effectively.

  • Eye infection or injury – causing inflammation and cornea scarring. Infection may also cause corneal ulcers. A scratched cornea or corneal abrasion is one of the most common eye injuries that results in disrupted or lost cornea cells and may cause a red, painful, watering eye and blurred vision.

Complications from previous corneal or eye surgery.

When Is a Corneal Transplant Recommended?

  • Your surgeon may recommend a corneal transplant if you have vision problems due to keratoconus or eye infection that causes your cornea to become thinner.

  • You may also need a corneal transplant if one or both corneas have scars due to previous injuries or infections.

  • Corneal transplants may also be recommended if you have vision loss due to cloudy corneas caused by Fuchs’ dystrophy or a similar condition.

  • Corneal transplants can help restore your vision, although you might need to use corrective lenses afterwards. This surgical procedure can also help ease pain associated with eye diseases and other conditions that affect the cornea. Your eye doctor might recommend this procedure if you have vision loss or if you are in considerable pain.

What are the benefits of the cornea transplant?

The benefits of cornea transplant eye surgery are:

  • Improved or restored sight
  • Pain relief
  • It corrects vision to more than 70%
  • Recovery is quick
  • Treatment of severe eye infection

Before cornea transplant

  • Before Cornea transplant surgery the ophthalmologist will do several eye tests which will determine whether you are good candidate for corneal transplant or not.

  • A through eye examination- Your eye surgeon will done eye examination to check any condition which will later cause complications.

  • Measurement of the eye- the doctor will check what size of the cornea is needed by the patient.

  • Review of all the medications and supplements – all the medication will be thoroughly reviewed and the surgeon may advise to stop taking some medicines after or before the surgery.

  • Treatment for other eye problem- infection inflammation etc. must be well treated before the surgery.

  • Information about medical condition- the patient must inform the surgeon about any medical condition or allergy he/she has been suffering from.

Important Reminder:- The patient is required to not eat anything after midnight the night before the surgery. The patient can have water, juice, tea or coffee (without sugar or cream) up to two hour before the surgery. Alcohol must be strictly not consumed since 24hr before the surgery.

During cornea transplant

During cornea transplant
  • On the day of your cornea transplant, you’ll be given a sedative to help you relax and a local anesthetic to numb your eye. You won’t be asleep during the surgery, but you shouldn’t feel any pain.

  • During the most common type of cornea transplant (penetrating keratoplasty), your surgeon cuts through the entire thickness of the abnormal or diseased cornea to remove a small button-sized disk of corneal tissue. An instrument that acts like a cookie cutter (trephine) is used to make this precise circular cut.

  • The donor cornea, cut to fit, is placed in the opening. Your surgeon then uses a fine thread to stitch the new cornea into place. The stitches may be removed at a later visit when you see your eye doctor.

  • In some cases, if people aren’t eligible for a cornea transplant from a donor cornea, doctors may insert an artificial cornea (keratoprosthesis).

What Happens After a Corneal Transplant?

You’ll be able to go home the same day as your surgery. You may feel some soreness and will most likely wear an eye patch or gauze over the affected eye for up to four days. Don’t rub your eyes. Your doctor will prescribe eye drops and possibly oral medications to help with healing.

What complications can happen?

Like all surgical procedures, there are some levels of risks to consider after cornea transplant. Some of these can be serious and can even cause death. However, you can speak to your doctor about the following general and specific complications that may worry you.

General complications of any operation

  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Infection

Specific complications of this operation

  • Heavy bleeding inside your eye
  • Inflammation in your other eye
  • Leak at your wound
  • Transferring infection from the donor
  • Increase in eye pressure
  • Failure of the transplant

Frequently Asked Questions Cornea Transplant in India

How successful is a cornea transplant?

The success rate of a cornea transplant in India is very high using modern eyebanking and surgical techniques. However, there are many factors that influence the outcome. For instance, keratoconus has one of the best prognoses for good vision with a greater than 90% chance of a clear graft.

Will I need glasses or contact lenses after my surgery?

A small percentage of Cornea transplant patients do obtain good vision without glasses or contacts. But in most cases, glasses or contact lenses are necessary after surgery.

Can artificial corneas be used for transplants?

No. Plastic implants are used only to replace a cloudy lens (cataract) inside the eye. For corneal transplants, living tissue must be used.

Will my eye color be the same after a corneal transplant?

Yes. Only the transparent done in the front of the eye is replaced, and not the colored iris behind it. In rare cases, existing corneal scars block the true color of the eye, and therefore the eye appears to have changed color after the operation.

Will I be asleep or awake for my operation?

This surgery is done under either local or general anesthesia. Age, general health, length of surgery, and patient preference are factors weighed in deciding which route to take.

What exactly does the cornea transplant surgery involve?

Briefly, a round instrument called a trephine is used like a cookie cutter to remove the center of your diseased cornea. A “button” of similar size is trephined from a donor cornea. This donor button is then sewn in place with fine nylon sutures. The entire procedure is done under an operating microscope.

Do blood vessels have to be reconnected?

No. The cornea has no blood supply and gets its nourishment from the fluid inside the eye.

How long will I be in the surgery center, and how long does the surgery last?

You enter about one hour before surgery, and usually go home 1-2 hours after surgery. The procedure is typically about 1.5-2.0 hours in duration.

Does my eye hurt after cornea transplant surgery?

Pain varies from person to person. Typically there is mild soreness for a few days, relieved by Tylenol.

How long will my eye be patched?

Until the surface epithelium is healed, usually 1 to 3 days. After the patch is removed, it is important to wear something hard in front of the eye (glasses or a metal shield) at all times to give it mechanical protection. Typically, patients wear their glasses during the day. A metal shield is worn at night for one month.

When will I be able to see?

Vision improves gradually as the new cornea heals. There is often useful vision within several weeks. However, in some cases it may take several months to a year for full visual potential to develop.

Will I be on special medications after cornea transplant surgery?

Yes. You will be on steroid drops in the eye for several months to prevent rejection of the new cornea. In some cases daily steroid drops are used indefinitely. Occasionally other eye medications are necessary.

What is a rejection?

If the body’s immune system recognizes the new cornea as foreign tissue, cells start to attack the endothelium of the donor cornea, the innermost cell layer that normally pumps water out of the cornea to keep it clear. Therefore, the new cornea becomes swollen and cloudy.

Is there any treatment for rejection?

Yes. When detected early, rejection can be reversed 90% of the time by intensive use of topical, oral, and subconjunctival steroids.

When are the sutures removed?

This varies, depending on the age of the patient, nature of the corneal disease and type of sutures used. Usually sutures are removed sometime between 4 months and 1 year, although in some cases they are left in permanently. Suture removal is a simple office procedure.

How often will I visit the eye doctor after my cornea transplant?

You will be seen the first day after surgery, one week after, then monthly and gradually at longer intervals over the first year, and yearly thereafter. At these visits we will be checking for such things as graft clarity, wound leaks, eye pressure, infection, and surface healing. Postoperative care is extremely important and by far the most time consuming part of having a corneal transplant.

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