02.02.2011

Sharing cornea donations "presents problems"

Sharing cornea donations "presents problems"

By Adrian Galbreth

There are many potential barriers to a new way of treating multiple patients with eye disease by using a single cornea, it has been claimed.

After a new study by Dr Claus Cursiefen highlighted the success of a number of operations performed at the University Eye Hospital, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nurnberg, Germany, in 2009, experts have warned that it may not become widespread yet.

The procedure involves using one donated cornea to treat two patients and is thought to help the supply problem, but experts involved with the study pointed out that the operations are demanding and can only be performed at leading ophthalmic hospitals.

"Also, preparation and care of the split corneas requires sophisticated planning and preparation, and access to additional corneas is essential in case full transplants became necessary," they state.

Recently, experts at the Schepens Eye Research Institute found that free radicals, which are unstable molecules that cause the death of cells as the body ages, may also cause damage in the eyes of Fuchs endothelial corneal dystrophy patients.

by Alexa Kaczka


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