• Will my Fuchs’ dystrophy come back after treatment?


    Question:

    I have Fuchs’ dystrophy (a condition that causes damage to the inner layer of the cornea) and am awaiting corneal surgery to replace the left eye’s endothelial layer. My question is, after the procedure does the eye "retain the condition?" Will the replacement layer similarly start to slowly deteriorate?


    Answer:

    Fuch's dystrophy is a condition in which you either are born with too few endothelial cells (the inner lining of the cornea) or you lose them at a faster rate over time than usual. These cells do not reproduce so you cannot grow new ones to replace ones that are lost. Once enough of these cells are lost, vison can suffer and a transplant will be recommended. Your new lining will probably last a lifetime. It will lose cells at the normal rate and that is why the transplant lining is preferentially from a younger donor. Deterioration to the point of needing a further transplant would only be likely if the transplant tissue was from an older eye, if the body rejects the transplant, or there was some disturbance like trauma or additional surgery which can accelerate the loss of cells. Your transplantation surgeon is aware of these facts and will do everything to ensure that your new lining lasts the rest of your life.


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