Corneal Treatment & Surgery

A damaged or diseased cornea can cause enormous vision problems and even blindness. Ophthalmology Associates offers a multitude of procedures and techniques including corneal surgery and corneal transplantation to meet the needs of almost any patient with a variety of approaches. During a personal consultation, an ophthalmologist will evaluate your corneal condition and determine the proper course of treatment.

 corneal transplant surgery

Corneal Conditions & Treatments

Corneal Abrasion

A corneal abrasion is a scratch or scrape on the cornea—the clear, round dome covering the eye’s iris and pupil. By helping to focus light as it enters the eye, the cornea plays an important role in vision. When a corneal abrasion scars the cornea, it can affect vision.

Corneal Dystrophies

Corneal dystrophies are a group of rare genetic eye disease. With corneal dystrophies, abnormal material builds up in the cornea. Most corneal dystrophies affect both eyes. They progress slowly and run in families.

Corneal Erosion

Corneal erosion affects the cornea—the clear dome covering the front of the eye. The cornea is composed of five layers. The outermost layer is the epithelium. When the epithelium does not stay attached correctly to the corneal tissue below, including the layer called the Bowman’s layer or the basement membrane, this can cause a condition called corneal erosion. If the problem occurs repeatedly, it is called recurrent corneal erosion.

Corneal Laceration

A corneal laceration is a cut on the cornea. It is usually caused by something sharp flying into the eye. Eye injuries like corneal laceration can also be caused by something striking the eye with significant force, like a metallic hand tool. A corneal laceration is deeper than a corneal abrasion, cutting partially or fully through the cornea. If the corneal laceration is deep enough it can cause a full thickness laceration. This is when the laceration cuts completely through the cornea and causes a ruptured globe, a tear into the eyeball itself.


Corneal Surgery & Treatments

There are several corneal surgeries available. These include:

Pterygium Removal

Pterygium is benign thickening of the outer coating of the eye that grows onto the cornea. While there is no cure, laser surgery can be used to alleviate symptoms.

Photo-therapeutic Keratectomy (PTK)

Photo-therapeutic Keratectomy is designed to treat corneal surface disease. Removal of the outer layer of the cornea and subsequent smoothing of the cornea using a laser.

Superficial Keratectomy (SK)

Superficial Keratectomy is used to remove corneal haze or blurry vision. Removal of the outermost layer of the cornea and the anterior stroma.

Corneal Laceration Repair

Corneal laceration repair involves either a partial or full laceration resulting from a scratch to the cornea. Irrigation, patching and suturing may be used to correct the laceration. In some cases laser surgery can also be used.

Corneal Transplantation

If your cornea cannot be healed or repaired, your ophthalmologist may recommend corneal transplant surgery. This is when the diseased cornea is replaced with a clear, healthy cornea from a human donor.

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Meet Dr. Emily Birkholz

Dr. Birkholz specializes in cataract surgery, LASIK eye surgery, medical retina, glaucoma management and more.

Learn About LASIK

Our doctors have vast experience performing LASIK surgeries. We would be more than happy to provide further education on LASIK.

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Ophthalmology Associates has been serving the greater Mankato area for over 50 years and our goal has been to provide our patients with the utmost in personal attention and the very best in eye care services. Contact us to set up your appointment today!