The cornea protects your eye from contaminants like dust and germs and filters UV rays to protect your eyes. As the eye’s outermost lens, the cornea bends the light into the primary lens of your eye to refocus the light onto the retina.
Vold Vision offers a variety of options to allow the most effective treatment for corneal diseases. As the first provider of corneal collagen cross-linking for keratoconus and corneal ectasia in the Northwest Arkansas area, we are pleased to announce the minimally-invasive, preventative treatment.
What are Corneal Diseases?
The cornea’s main job is refraction, acting as a lens to bend or refract light to the retina. With a refractive error or corneal disease, the light bends incorrectly and is not focused on the retinal surface, causing objects to look out of focus or become dull due to a cloudy cornea.
There are several eye conditions explicitly related to the cornea that can be diagnosed and treated at Vold Vision, including:
How Does Cornea Treatment Work?
Depending on what’s happening with your cornea, Dr. Vold will carefully determine the most effective technique to restore your vision. Procedures broadly fall into two main categories, full (PKP) or partial thickness (DALK, DSAEK, or DMEK).
Descemet’s Stripping Automated Endothelial Keratoplasty (DSAEK) restores the cornea’s clarity from swelling, edema, or inflammation. With DSAEK, Dr. Vold can perform a partial cornea replacement surgery, resulting in quicker recovery than full-thickness and more traditional techniques.
Vold Vision also offers Descemet’s Membrane Endothelial Keratoplasty (DMEK)–the thinnest and most recent cornea transplant available. While DMEK is similar to DSAEK, the cornea tissue transplanted is only about 10 microns thick or 1/100th of a millimeter. By incorporating the thinnest tissue possible, DMEK leads to a faster recovery, a decreased risk of rejection, and a greater chance of attaining 20/20 vision.
Penetrating Keratoplasty (PK), a full-thickness cornea transplant, uses a donor graft to restore the cornea. In some cases, partial thickness transplants supplant PK due to reduced scarring and recovery. For example, Deep Anterior Lamellar Keratoplasty (DALK) is a partial-thickness transplant that replaces the stroma, or the outer layers of the cornea, leaving the inner layers intact.
Ocular Surface Reconstruction
In cases of severe dry eye, ocular surface disease, or certain corneal dystrophies, reconstruction of the ocular surface may be required to improve painful erosions or a chronic non-healing eye surface and ultimately repair by planting a protective contact lens or healing amniotic membrane onto the eye surface.
Corneal Cross-linking is a minimally invasive procedure, lasting approximately one hour. The Avedro system we offer at Vold Vision is the only FDA-approved cross-linking system in the United States.
During the procedure, riboflavin, a vitamin solution, is dripped onto the eye, followed by shining a UV light onto the eye for 30 minutes. At the end of the procedure, Dr. Vold places a contact lens to keep the eye comfortable while the eye heals and prescribes antibiotic and anti-inflammatory drops for several weeks.
In rare cases, the procedure may need to be repeated a second time. In many cases, cross-linking may prevent the need for future corneal transplantation or other more invasive treatments due to these conditions.
Why Should I Go to Vold Vision for Corneal Treatment?
Not everyone’s corneas stay clear their entire lives. If something occurs that requires corneal treatment, now is the time to take that first step to clearer eyesight. At Vold Vision, our team of friendly and patient professionals, led by Dr. Vold, will bring all their experience and technology to diagnose accurately and successfully treat your condition so you can reclaim the best possible vision.
Corneal Cross-Linking FAQ
Take the Next Step
To learn more about the cornea, schedule a consultation with one of the providers at Vold Vision. Throughout your entire laser vision correction journey, you will have your very own Vold liaison to assist you with any questions you have. Our patient care counselors are available by text, phone, or email and no question is too small for them to answer. To schedule a consultation, fill out the consultation request form below, or call or text (479) 442-8653.