A Revolution in Ophthalmology
New cutting-edge techniques in Ophthalmology have made visual rehabilitation time faster, and easier. Two techniques on record only require partial layers that are affected to be replaced by donor tissues. The names of the procedures are DMEK (Descemet’s membrane endothelial keratoplasty) and DALK (deep anterior lamellar keratoplasty). The procedures are successors to the traditional procedure called penetrating keratoplasty (replacing the full-thickness of the cornea). The traditional method is still needed for penetrating injuries and diseases that affect the full thickness. DMEK, a partial-thickness cornea transplant procedure, consists of removing and replacing Descemet’s membrane and the endothelium, which are the innermost layers of the cornea. Some of the most common corneal diseases only affect the innermost layer and cause loss of vision. Fuchs’ Dystrophy is a common inherited disease which results in degeneration of the corneal endothelium which results in swelling of the cornea with blurred vision. DMEK is now considered the best treatment for advanced cases of this disease. DALK is a procedure for replacing the outer layers of the cornea which are scarred. The most common disease benefitting from this surgery is called keratoconus. This is a thinning disorder of the cornea which results in warpage of the cornea and blurred vision. In some cases, glasses or contacts will temporarily fix the issue. However, glasses and contacts cannot fix all cases and surgical procedures are needed. These two procedures are not common, due to their being fairly new, but are being done right here in the Santa Clarita Valley at Helm Vision Group.
For more information, please call Helm Vision at 661-259-3937.
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