Corneal Transplant Rejection

Corneal transplant rejection is a process in which the transplanted recipient’s immune system tends to attack the transplanted corneal tissue. There are three types of corneal transplant rejection. They are hyper actuate rejection, which occurs within a few minutes of transplantation, Acute rejection, which may occur from the 1st week of transplantation to 3 months afterwards and Chronic rejection, which may occur after many years of transplantation.

  • Common reasons or causes for corneal transplant rejection:

The most common reasons for corneal transplant rejection are eye and vision conditions, head conditions, immune system conditions, surgery and hospital related conditions. The eye and vision conditions are one of the reasons for corneal transplant rejection due to cone rod dystrophy, retinal cone dystrophy, cone rod dystrophy, vision to touch synesthesia, eye melanoma, myopia, orbital lymphoma, astigmatism and many other disorders.

Head conditions which are severe causes for corneal transplant rejection are cancers and skull fractures and less threatening causes are head lice and headache conditions. The immune system conditions are another cause for corneal transplant rejection which includes immune compromise (impaired immune system) and opportunistic or fungal infections. Surgery or hospital related conditions can also be a reason for corneal transplant rejection.

  • Other options or treatments for Corneal Transplant rejection:

When the vision of the eye is drooping due to damage to the cornea, the doctor may recommend eye ointments or eye drops. However these options are preferred over corneal transplantation only when the damage to the cornea is minimal. When the damage is severe and the vision is blurred with severe pain being experienced while performing activities like reading, working on a computer or driving, the doctor will advice for a corneal transplantation.

The corneal transplant rejections can be reversed or treated with steroids like oral steroids, topical steroids and corticosteroids. The topical steroids are used for milder cases whereas systemic steroids are to used for severe cases. The steroids should always be taken under medical supervision only.

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