The cornea is a specialized tissue that’s transparent and receives its oxygen and nutrients from the aqueous humor (fluid inside the eye) a thin inside layer of cells called endothelial cells is responsible for pumping that liquid out of the cornea and preserve its optical qualities.
In Fuchs endothelial dystrophy the endothelial cells are not working properly and excess fluid remains in the cornea causing it to swell and scar and disturb vision. Patients with Fuchs often feel glare, blurry or cloudy vision, color halos around light, foreign body sensation and even pain .
The goal in the treatment of Fuchs is to maintain the clarity and normal thickness of the cornea as well as to preserve the vision. In early stages of Fuch’s a non surgical approach in treatment is we can observe and maintain the cornea lubricated and thin by applying hypertonic 5% sodium chloride eye drops which will keep the cornea dehydrated removing the excess water from it .
In more advance cases this treatment will not work and a surgical approach is preferred.
DSEK surgery is still used as a treatment with good results for Fuchs endothelial dystrophy, In DSEK we remove the sick endothelial cell layer and replace it with a healthy endothelial cell layer and a portion of posterior stroma. The total thickness of the replacement cornea is around 120-140 microns.
The newer and more advance procedure for treatment of Fuchs endothelial dystrophy is called DMEK, in which we replaced the sick endothelial cell layer for a healthy endothelial cell layer without any attached posterior stroma, the total thickness of the replacement cornea is only 10-15 micrones, this has the advantage of a faster recovery, better end vision, and much lower risk of rejection . this painless outpatient surgery has excellent results in treating this disease.
At NW Cornea Institute our experts can properly diagnose and treat Fuch’s endothelial dystrophy, as world innovators and breakthrough researchers for this disease you can be confident you will get the best treatment option for Fuchs endothelial dystrophy.