What is cornea?
The Cornea of the eye is a transparent layer at the front of the eye, which contributes to 2/3rd of the eye’s optical power, and also plays a large role in clarity of vision. You can compare it to the glass of your watch which needs to be clear in order to see the time on the dial.
Infections or immune reactions in the cornea are referred to as “Keratitis”. When the infection penetrates to cause breakdown of the intact layers of cornea of eye, it is often referred to as a “CORNEAL ULCER”.
These are usually accompanied by loss/reduction of transparency of the cornea, and hence the primary complaint of a patient presenting with central keratitis would be blurring of vision.
In the case of infections, it tends to take longer time to heal. Appropriate anti-infectives are given in the form of drops or oral medications, to arrest the infectious agent in its early stages.
Occasionally, the keratitis (infection of cornea of eye) may heal with the formation of a scar which may cause persistent hazy vision. Depending on the amount of vision affected, extreme cases may even require a corneal transplant.
Corneal dystrophy and degeneration
These are relatively rare conditions involving the cornea of eye and may affect one or both eyes. Often they are idiopathic, meaning have no known cause. Typically they cause worsening of vision, and have a tendency to relapse even after they are operated on.
Dr Kareeshma Wadia has done a super speciality in this field and spent 2 years in Bangalore at Narayana Nethralaya Superspeciality Eye Hospital to master the art of these cornea transplant surgeries.