Cataract Surgery and Corneal Edema
AUG 29, 2012
After cataract surgery my cornea is swollen, which my doctor called corneal edema. What is the treatment for this condition? I am afraid to have the other eye lens removed because of this situation.
First of all, the condition you describe is not rare. It can occur in some with a genetic predisposition (Endothelial guttata or Fuchs' dystrophy) to a weak posterior corneal layer, prolonged cataract surgery or a reaction even to certain medications or inflammatory conditions. The primary treatment is typically steroid drops and hyperosmotic agents such as Muro 128 (a hypertonic saline agent) which pulls the edema fluid out of the cornea. This condition can take weeks or months to resolve and the good news is that if it does not, there is a surgical procedure to replace the posterior cornea that is not functioning properly. This procedure is commonly known as DSEK and is a fairly short outpatient procedure.
As far as your second eye goes, you may have a predisposition to this condition and your surgeon should be able to advise you on this. There are special surgical precautions that can be taken to lessen the edema but it may still occur again.
In most cases, although it may take time, your visual outcome should be very good.