Home > Eye Donation
- What is an eye bank?
- Why should eyes be donated?
- What is the cornea?
- What is corneal Transplantation?
- How does a cornea become opaque?
- Magnitude of the problem in India
- Who can be an eye donor?
- Can the next-of-kin consent to a donation if the deceased family member hasn't signed a pledge form?
- How to donate?
- Things to do after making the call
- Who cannot be a donor?
- Is there any delay in funeral arrangements?
- Is there religious conflict?
- Can the whole eye be transplanted?
- Can a person blind from retinal or optic nerve disease donate his eyes?
- Can the recipients be told who donated the eyes?
- Do cataracts or the use of spectacles render the corneas unfit?
- Does eye donation disfigure the donor’s face?
- Does the human body reject the transplanted donor’s cornea?
- What conditions render the cornea unfit for donation?
- What about diabetes or hypertension?
- How will my donation be used?
- Is there any use for corneas which are for some reason unfit for transplant?
- Do corneal transplants guarantee sight to all blind people?
- How quickly should eyes be removed after death?
- What is an eye bank?
- How to donate eyes?
An eye bank is an organization, which obtain, evaluates and distributes eyes from humanitarian-minded citizens for use in corneal transplantation, research and education. To ensure patient safety, the donated eyes are evaluated under strict medical standards.
Donated human eyes are necessary in preservation and restoration of sight through corneal transplantation, research and education. More than 90% corneal transplant operation successfully restores vision in people suffering from blindness due to corneal problems. Infants born with cloudy corneas have an opportunity to see following corneal transplantation.
The cornea is the clear, transparent dome in front of the "black portion" of the eye. It is also the main focusing surface, which converges light rays as they enter the eye to focus on the retina. It is thus the most important part of the optical apparatus of the Eye. Loss of transparency directly results in loss of vision.
What is corneal Transplantation?
A Corneal transplant is an operation which replaces the opaque cornea with a clear cornea Obtained from a human donor eye.
How does a cornea become opaque?
Infection, Injuries, latrogenic (Malpractice, Improper Post-op, care after any eye surgery). Mainutrition, Congenital/Hereditary.
Magnitude of the problem in India
¼ of the world's blind live in India
27 million-moderate sight impairment
9 million - bilateral blind
260,000 - blind children
No of Corneal Blinds in India 4.6 Million.
90% are below the age of 45 years including 60% are below the age of 12 years.
Out of 4.6 Million, at least 3 Million can benefit by Corneal transplantation.
Practically anybody from the age of 1 year. There is no maximum age limit. Poor eye sight and age make no difference. One can bequeath his eyes by taking a pledge while he is alive. He resolve to donate his eyes after his death. This by itself is a noble act but it requires relatives or friends to carry out his pledge, his desire, after his death.
Spectacle Wearers, persons who had cataract surgery, diabetics and hypertensives can donate eyes. The ultimate decision about usage for transplantation will be made after evaluation.
Can the next-of-kin consent to a donation if the deceased family member hasn't signed a pledge form?
You are authorized to donate the eyes of your beloved relatives at the time of their death. That the eyes to be collected within 6 hours of death. So, call the eye bank as early as possible after the death.
Things to do after making the call:
- Keep both eyes of deceased closed and convered with moist cotton.
- Switch off the overhead fan.
- If possible, instill antibiotic eye drops periodically in the deceased's eyes-to reduce the chance of infection.
- Raise the head end of the body by about 6 inches, if possible - to lessen the incidence of bleeding during the removal of the eyes.
- Death of unknown cause.
- Death due to infectious caused viz. Rables, syphilis, infectious hepatitis, septicemia, and AIDS.
Is there any delay in funeral arrangements?
No, Eyes removal is performed shortly (within half an hour) after death and leaves no visible signs the would interfere with common funeral practices.
No, Donations gives a gift of life or sight to others. As such, it is consistent with beliefs and attitudes of all major religious and ethical traditions.
Can the whole eye be transplanted?
No, Only the cornea can be transplanted. However, the rest in part of the donor eye is used for research and education.
Can a person blind from retinal or optic nerve disease donate his eyes?
Yes, Provided the cornea is clear.
Can the recipients be told who donated the eyes?
No, The gift of sight is made anonymously.