What is DALK eye surgery?

DALK (Deep Anterior Lamellar Keratoplasty) is one of the newer forms of corneal transplants. When the first truly successful cornea transplants were developed in the 1960s, they were Full Thickness (called Penetrating Keratoplasty). The entire central corneal was removed and replaced, whether the reason for the transplant was a problem on the back (the endothelium) or the front (an anterior scar for example). While far better than anything available before, they took a very long time to heal and stabilize. DALK removes and replaces just the anterior part of the cornea. So it provides faster visual rehabilitation and less chance of rejection.

_Written by J. Trevor Woodhams, M.D. - Chief of Surgery, Woodhams Eye Clinic