Although corneal transplant results are generally very good, not all patients require a full thickness transplant. Diseases that affect only one layer of the cornea may only need a partial thickness transplant. DSAEK (pronounced dē’ sek; Descemets Stipping Automated Endothelial Keratoplasty) aims to replace only the inner layer of the cornea. In patients where only this layer of the cornea is defective, such as Fuch’s Dystrophy, DSAEK offers several advantages over traditional full thickness transplants, including smaller incisions, minimal stitches and faster recovery time. A small incision is made to gain access to the inner layer of the cornea. This damaged endothelial tissue is removed and a new layer of donor tissue is inserted into the eye. A few stitches are used to close the wound, and the new tissue is centered and held in place with an air bubble. This bubble holds the new layer against the existing layers of cornea. The air bubble only remains in the eye for a short period of time and is absorbed over a couple of days. Most patients notice visual improvement within the first few weeks after the surgery. And full recovery usually takes place over three to four months. Dr. Edwards is the only cornea fellowship trained specialist in all of southern Utah and is highly skilled and experienced with corneal surgery and medical treatments.

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