If you have been lucky enough to receive a donated cornea you know how amazing this gift is.
A cornea transplant is an operation to remove all or part of a damaged cornea and replace it with healthy donor tissue. A corneal transplant is often referred to as keratoplasty or a corneal graft. It can be used to improve sight, relieve pain and treat severe infection or damage.
One of the most common reasons for a cornea transplant is keratoconus, which causes the cornea to change shape.
Did you also know that you can donate your eyes even if you have had a corneal graft or transplant yourself?
Organ and Tissue Donation (after death)
Donating your body TISSUE after death includes Bone, Skin, Corneas, Heart Valves, etc..
NHSBT has a Tissue Donor Co-Ordinator who can advise and arrange collection at time of death. Because it is important to collect some tissue as soon after death as possible, NHSBT has a PAGER number for an On Call Co-ordinator which can be used 24 hours a day.
The number is 07659 180773. This will connect you to an operator who will page the Tissue Donor Co-ordinator.
Anyone can register their wish to donate ORGANS. This can be done by putting your name on the National Register. Please contact Organ donation and Transplantation at http://www.organdonation.nhs.uk/ or please call 0300 123 23 23.
There is also a useful website at http://www.amrc.org.uk/
It is so important to know that you can help others after you have passed.
Giving Blood If You Have Had A Corneal Graft
England – Sadly you are not able to donate blood if you have had a full or partial corneal graft (in the UK). This is either for the safety of yourself in giving blood or for the safety of patients that receive your blood.
If you have received, or think you may have received, a blood transfusion or transplanted material since 1st January 1980 you will not be able to give blood.
This measure was introduced in 2004 by the UK Transfusion Services. It is just one of a range of measures designed to minimise the risk of passing variant Creutzfeldt Jakob Disease (vCJD) through the population.
If you require any more information about this please call the Donor Helpline on 0300 123 23 23, Monday to Friday, 9am to 7pm, where they can transfer you to your local Referral Team who can deal with more complex issues.
In Wales if you have received, or think you may have received, a blood transfusion or transplanted material since 1st January 1980 you will not be able to give blood.