Corneal Transplant

What is a Corneal Transplant?

The cornea is the transparent, dome-shaped surface of the eye where light enters. It plays a large role in your eye’s ability to see clearly. A corneal transplant is a surgical procedure to replace part of your cornea with donor corneal tissue and restore vision, improve the appearance of a damaged cornea, or reduce pain.

There are a number of conditions that can be treated with a corneal transplant, including:

  • Keratoconus.
  • Fuchs’ dystrophy.
  • Cornea scarring caused by injury of infection.
  • Thinning or tearing of the cornea.
  • Corneal ulcers.
  • Swelling of the cornea.
  • Complications due to previous eye surgery.

Preparation for Corneal Transplant

Before your cornea transplant surgery, you will need to undergo a comprehensive eye exam. This allows Dr. Gupta to look for any conditions that might cause complications after surgery and take measurements of your eye to determine what size donor cornea is needed. You may also be asked to temporarily stop taking certain medications, such as aspirin, for a couple of weeks before your surgery. Dr. Gupta will speak with you regarding all preparation instructions prior to your procedure.


  • " Professional, Knowledgeable and Attentive"

    Dr. Archana Gupta is very professional, knowledgeable, and attentive. Her office staff members Kira and Maria are polite, friendly, and very helpful. I would highly recommend this Dr. Gupta and her office.

    - IL

  • "Outstanding in All Respects"

    Outstanding in all respects. Dr. Gupta and her staff are true professionals and highly competent. Everything was explained to me in great detail at every step of my procedure and they took great care of me. She is also kind and courteous and really cares about her patients. I strongly recommend Dr. Gupta!!!

    - KB

  • "Professional, Excellent and Thorough"

    I thought it was very professional. The exam was excellent. Very thorough. The technician was great and the doctor is wonderful. The doctor was very calming.

    - MP

    The Corneal Transplant Procedure

    Corneal transplant is often done as an outpatient procedure under local anesthesia, so you can return home the same day. On the day of your surgery, you will be given a sedative to help you relax, and a local anesthetic will be used to numb the eyes.

    A cornea transplant removes either the entire or partial thickness of the diseased cornea and replaces it with healthy donor tissue. There are a number of different surgical methods to achieve this, which include:

    • Penetrating keratoplasty (PK): During thismethod, your surgeon will cut through the whole thickness of the cornea to remove a small disk of corneal tissue. The donor cornea will then be placed into this opening. Sutures are used to stitch the new cornea into place, which may be absorbable or removed at a later visit.
    • Endothelial keratoplasty (EK): This procedure removes diseased tissue from the back corneal layers including the endothelium and Descemet membrane, which is replaced with donor tissue. There are two types of EK, including:
      •  Descemet stripping endothelial keratoplasty (DSEK): The surgeon removes the endothelium and the Descemet membrane just above it. Then they replace them with a donated endothelium and Descemet membrane still attached to the stroma (the cornea’s thick middle layer) to help handle the new tissue without damaging it.
      •  Descemet membrane endothelial keratoplasty (DMEK): Transplants just the endothelium and Descemet membrane with no supporting stroma. Healing from this procedure is usually quicker.
    • Anterior lamellar keratoplasty (ALK): Two different methods remove diseased tissue from the front corneal layers, including the epithelium and the stroma, but leave the back endothelial layer in place.

    Corneal Transplant Recovery

    After corneal transplant surgery, you may need to wear an eye patch for a while as your cornea heals. Eye sensitivity, redness, and soreness are common for the first few days. Prescription eye drops can help to bring down any inflammation that occurs, as well as lower the chances of infection. It can take several months for your overall vision to improve. Dr. Gupta will give you specific instructions regarding your recovery for the best results.


    Dr.Archana Gupta

    Cataract Surgeon, Opthalmologist, Cornea & External Diseases Specialist

    Dr. Archana Gupta is a board certified ophthalmologist. She specializes in cataract, cornea, external diseases and refractive surgery.

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