Am I qualified for a Cornea Transplant?

Don't ask questions here; this is for posting closed FAQs with their answers only.

Moderators: John Smith, Sweet

Nashaax3
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue 06 Sep 2016 10:22 am
Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
Vision: Contact lenses

Am I qualified for a Cornea Transplant?

Postby Nashaax3 » Tue 06 Sep 2016 10:35 am

Hello, my first time ever joining a forum so bear with me.

I am 22 years old and female. I have had Keratoconus in my right eye since i was 10 years old. Since then, the KC has got progressively worse in my right eye and developed into my Left eye now forcing me to wear rigid gas permeable contact lenses in both eyes. When taking my lenses out my right eye has hardly any vision at all. It's been getting me upset and depressed for a while now.

I was looking into the transplant and I really think it's for me. But I don't think I qualify yet.

Any advice or experiences you can share I would be very grateful.

Natasha.

User avatar
Lia Williams
Forum Stalwart
Forum Stalwart
Posts: 436
Joined: Thu 16 Feb 2006 5:27 pm
Location: Surrey

Re: Am I qualified for a Cornea Transplant?

Postby Lia Williams » Tue 06 Sep 2016 12:24 pm

Hi Naahaax3,

Welcome to the forum.

What is your sight like with contact lenses? If you can see well and they are comfortable I doubt very much if a cornea transplant would be a good idea.

Corneal transplants can take time to settle down and most people will still need a contact lens to optimise their vision. So a corneal transplant is not a quick fix. However if your vision is poor with contact lenses, and you cannot wear them for long, and you've tried lots of different types of contact lenses, then a corneal transplant could be thing for you.

You say that your vision in your right eye is very poor without a lens. I can't see much without my lenses either but I have back-up pair of glasses that give me some vision which I use first thing in the morning and last thing at night, or just to give my eyes a rest.


Lia

Nashaax3
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue 06 Sep 2016 10:22 am
Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
Vision: Contact lenses

Re: Am I qualified for a Cornea Transplant?

Postby Nashaax3 » Tue 06 Sep 2016 1:05 pm

Hi Lia,

Many thanks for this.

With contact lenses together very good. With my right eye I struggle to read from distances still. But my left eye overpowers my right eye.

I have tried glasses but my vision has become so bad now that my optometrist suggest to not have the glasses any more. I would like to give my eyes a rest by having this option as wearing the lenses constantly for 12+ hours a day hurts my eyes and make it very uncomfortable. I always have to rub them afterwards. I do put drops in throughout the day but they do become red and sore still.

Natasha

User avatar
Lia Williams
Forum Stalwart
Forum Stalwart
Posts: 436
Joined: Thu 16 Feb 2006 5:27 pm
Location: Surrey

Re: Am I qualified for a Cornea Transplant?

Postby Lia Williams » Tue 06 Sep 2016 5:16 pm

Natasha,

Try not to rub your eyes as there are various reports that suggest that it could make keratoconus worse. Not easy, I know, when eyes itch but eye rubbing is not recommended.

What is your eyesight like without lenses? If you can manage this could be why the optometrist has recommended that you don't have glasses any more. Sometimes people can manage without their glasses, especially if one eye still has reasonable vision, and because the glasses don't give as good vision as with contact lenses they don't get worn. The optometrists then get complaints that patient has bought an unnecessary pair of glasses.

It may be worth investigating whether a different type of contact lens is more suitable for you. There lots of different designs and materials so a change of lens type or material may help.

Lia

User avatar
Anne Klepacz
Committee
Committee
Posts: 2064
Joined: Sat 20 Mar 2004 5:46 pm
Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
Vision: Graft(s) and contact lenses

Re: Am I qualified for a Cornea Transplant?

Postby Anne Klepacz » Tue 13 Sep 2016 10:55 am

Hi Natasha,
I had transplants in both eyes in my 30s. But by that time, my rgps were very uncomfortable to wear AND they didn't give me anything like decent vision. As Lia says, grafts aren't a quick fix so only usually done when contact lenses are no longer adequate.
I used to be a terrible eye rubber immediately after taking out my lenses. But I've finally weaned myself off this - instead, I rub the bones around my eyes and by some miracle, that seems to give the relief I need!

Nashaax3
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue 06 Sep 2016 10:22 am
Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
Vision: Contact lenses

Re: Am I qualified for a Cornea Transplant?

Postby Nashaax3 » Tue 20 Sep 2016 1:31 pm

Hi Lia, I am trying to stop rubbing my eyes now. without lenses I can't read anything unless it is up close like an inch away from my eyes. I had a chat to my optometrist and they have looked at how aggressive the keratoconus is now and has referred me for a cornea cross linking. Think i need to read up more on this. Thank you for your advice.

Hi Anne, ah ok. Yes I currently have that issue in my right eye but my left one is ok for now. So all rgps I have had fitted to my right eye have always fallen out and just wont settle properly. The vision too is now deteriorating in my right with rgp lens. I will see what the CXL does and see what happens then. Ah fab thank you for the advice on the eye rubbing i will try this in the future.

Natasha

Jan
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed 07 Feb 2018 12:13 pm
Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
Vision: Spectacles

I’m not sure what I have. Help

Postby Jan » Wed 07 Feb 2018 12:27 pm

Hi all, I have been told I need a cornea transplant by the hospital, when I asked the specialist what was wrong he said, you have a pump that is under the cornea that is not working to get rid of water, so I’m water logged and what may happen is suddenly my eyes will go cloudy then I need to go in then again it may not happen but you will come here every six months and we will keep an eye on you, has anyone here heard of this please, thanks. Jan x

User avatar
John Smith
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 1940
Joined: Thu 08 Jan 2004 12:48 am
Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
Vision: Graft(s) and spectacles
Location: Sidcup, Kent

Re: Am I qualified for a Cornea Transplant?

Postby John Smith » Wed 07 Feb 2018 4:06 pm

Your cornea is made up of several layers of cells, and the job of the back layer (the endothelium) is indeed to pump water out of the cornea.

Unfortunately, we are born with a number of these endothelial 'pump' cells, and they are never replaced. So it does indeed sound feasible that you could need a full thickness transplant (also called a penetrating keratoplasty, or PK) to get some new cells from a donor. If you have KC, then your misshapen cornea will also be corrected by the procedure, but not usually to the extent that you are cured of your KC.

The transplant's job for KC is to make your vision correctable by either glasses or contact lenses.

Many of us here have transplants, so there are people here who can reassure you.

All the best,
John

Nj66
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun 06 Oct 2019 11:47 am
Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
Vision: On the waiting list for a graft

Re: Am I qualified for a Cornea Transplant?

Postby Nj66 » Sun 06 Oct 2019 12:42 pm

Hi I am new here,
I am a lady aged 53, I have had KC since early 20’s. Glasses & Gp lenses were fine until 18 years ago. I was caught in a house fire which left me with both legs burnt, both arms & hands with loss of fingers and tips on both hands and my face is disfigured. I managed to get through this.
However last year I had an operation to finish a new nose & had a stroke in recovery & was in ITU for a week!
I was in hospital for 12weeks and now can’t use my right hand very well. Before my stroke I was able to drive my car (Motability car)
But since my stroke I know I need help with steering aids etc.
I now have to have an assessment to find out what is needed. I had an assessment in August and could not read the number plate, went to optician got new glasses but I know I need something better.
I am now looking at transplant to give me help but due to fingers & stroke I don’t think I can use contact lenses!! I am very upset with not being able to drive!
Nicole

User avatar
Anne Klepacz
Committee
Committee
Posts: 2064
Joined: Sat 20 Mar 2004 5:46 pm
Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
Vision: Graft(s) and contact lenses

Re: Am I qualified for a Cornea Transplant?

Postby Anne Klepacz » Tue 08 Oct 2019 2:22 pm

Hi Nicole,
You sound like an amazing lady to have coped with all of this. There's probably quite a few of us here on the forum who can't drive because our sight just isn't good enough. But of course, how much impact that has on our lives depends on lots of other things such as how good public transport is locally (I live in London so not driving any more isn't too much of a problem) or whether we have other mobility problems. And these days, driving does mean independence for many people. So of course you're upset.
Was your keratoconus stable before the stroke? And do you know whether your vision has got worse because of changes in your KC, or whether it's the stroke that has affected your eyesight? You probably need to know more about what's going on before talking to a corneal specialist about whether a transplant would be possible. Are you being seen in an eye clinic?
If it is your KC that has changed, then a transplant should give you better vision, though there's no guarantee that you wouldn't still need contact lenses for driving standard vision. And it's not a quick solution - it can take months or a year to get good vision back after a transplant. Am I right in thinking you stopped using contact lenses after the injuries to your fingers? If so, I'm wondering whether anyone ever mentioned scleral lenses to you - they are the big lenses that cover the whole of the eye and might be easier to handle than the little rgp lenses. They are easier to handle because they are so big, but the technique for putting them in is very different and not everyone can get on with them. But it might be worth asking about them as another option.
Apologies for asking so many questions, but it sounds as though there's a lot to sort out!
Anne


Return to “Frequently asked Questions - and Answers”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests