Activities : Procurement & Distribution
The cornea is a unique organ - essentially it has no blood vessels and derives nourishment from other sources in the eye. It is this inherent property of the cornea, which makes it excellent graft material with minimal chances of rejection.
It is easy to harvest from the donor and can be done anywhere.
Does not require theatre facilities or costly surgical implements.
Does not involve any significant monetary factor.
With the availability of advanced storage medium , it is possible to store the cornea for a long period of time.
Thus transplantation need not be done as an emergency procedure but can be elective.
The donor corneas are medically evaluated and are graded for distribution.
Patients requiring transplants are registered with the eye bank.
Patients are usually wait listed.
Priority is given to patients who are bilaterally blind, with very low vision, and those who are young.
In certain circumstances, corneal transplantation is done on an emergency basis, such as a severe corneal ulcer and an impending or frank corneal perforation. In such circumstances the availability of reserve corneal tissue from any eye bank is of help.
Corneal transplantation is usually done on an elective basis.
It can be performed for optical purposes (to restore vision) or a tectonic purpose (to restore the structural integrity of the eye).
The surgical technique is simple and can be performed even under local anaesthesia in most cases.