Corneal Endothelium Transplant – DSAEK o DMEK


Corneal endothelium transplant is becoming the more widespread kind of transplant. It is performed in case of corneal edema caused by cornea guttata or bullous keratopathy.

This transplant consists in the replacement of the only damaged inner layer (endothelium), instead of the whole cornea.

The biggest advantage of the corneal endothelium transplan is the vision recovery that is definitely faster campared to traditional transplant.

The most common technique to perform this surgery is called DSAEK and consist in removing only the endothelium from the patient’s cornea, replacing it with an healthy endothelium coming from a donor.

This thin corneal layer is removed and replaced with a new layer; than an air bubble is injected inside the eye to make the new endothelium adhere to the patient’s cornea.

There are several advantages when choosing corneal endothelium transplant instead of traditional transplant:

  • Corneal endothelium transplant post-op is pretty quick: usually patients experience a full vision recovery as soon as 3 months after surgery;
  • Only two or three suture points are needed, avoiding all complications related to traditional corneal transplant suture (high degree astigmatism, erosions and infections on the corneal surface);
  • Rejection risk, when speaking of corneal endothelium transplant is fairly lower compared to traditional transplants.

A new methodology for the corneal endothelium transplant is the DMEK (Descemet Membrane Endothelial Keratoplasty): here the tissue portion is even thinner and visual recovery hypothetically faster. Dr. Badalà performs this kind of endothelium transplant in case of bullouse keratopathy and cornea guttata in Milan and Catania.