• On Eye Banking: “Bada-Bing, Bada-Boom; You Get the Tissue and You Are Done”

    On Eye Banking: “Bada-Bing, Bada-Boom; You Get the Tissue and You Are Done”

    “Cornea surgery really does begin in the eye bank,” Marian Sue Macsai-Kaplan, MD, reminded attendees during the Cornea Subspecialty Day on Saturday.

    More than 200 corneas are transplanted each day in the United States, Dr. Macsai-Kaplan noted. The donation process is remarkably complicated, with “numerous steps that involve many people.” But the advent of precut, prestripped, prestained, and preloaded cornea tissue has smoothed the actual transplantation process for surgeons, she said.

    Advantages of prepared tissue. Precut tissue saves time and money and reduces tissue wastage. And it “reduces wear and tear on the surgeon and eases our stress level,” Dr. Macsai-Kaplan said. “Bada-bing, bada-boom; you get the tissue and you’re done.”

    As for the marking placed on prepared tissue, Dr. Macsai-Kaplan said, “For me, the S-stamp is akin to the bread-slicing machine: It has revolutionized the way we do surgery.”

    Contamination concerns. A recent study on fungal contamination of eye bank tissue1 has raised concerns, Dr. Macsai-Kaplan noted. The study found detectable Candida growth in tissue prepared for endothelial keratoplasty. “Should we add antifungals to the storage media? Stay tuned: What we’re looking for is not only efficacy but also safety,” she said.

    Any problems should be immediately reported to the eye bank, Dr. Macsai-Kaplan said. She also recommended the World Health Organization’s initiative for medical products of human origin as an up-to-date source of information on documented adverse outcomes (see www.notifylibrary.org for more information).—Jean Shaw

    1 Brothers KM et al. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2017;135(11):1184-1190.

    Financial disclosures. None.