As we continue to navigate the scale and impact of COVID-19, the health and wellbeing of our staff and patients is always our greatest priority. We have therefore made the difficult decision to stop seeing both non-urgent new and follow-up consultations and non-urgent surgery after Friday 27th March 2020 until the situation eases.
Regardless of the type of corneal transplant that you have you have had, you will need to use a combination of antibiotic and steroid drops for the first few weeks after surgery. You may also be given steroid tablets to reduce the risk of rejection in some cases.
In the longer term you are likely to remain on a steroid drop at least once a day. This can significantly reduce the risk of rejection occurring. Graft rejection after corneal tranplant surgery is usually less likely than any other type of solid organ transplant such as a kidney or heart transplant. Nevertheless you must not stop using your eye drops unless specifically instructed to do so by your eye surgeon.
Depending on the type of transplant that you have, the donor cornea may need to be stitched into place. Stitches usually come out at 9 to 12 months for lamellar grafts and at around 18 months for full thickness penetrating grafts. In DSAEK surgery some buried stitches may be left in place long term.
Your surgeon will see you a few days after your surgery. The frequency of follow-up will depend on the type of transplant. Your appointments will become less frequent as the length of time from your surgery increases. Eventually patients are typically followed up annually.