In the 1950's Wills Eye Hospital pioneered the clinical concentration in the science and treatment of the cornea. Prior to subspecialization, corneal disease was treated alongside a variety of other conditions. In the intervening 70 years, this focus on the intricacies of corneal anatomy and health have empowered patients to overcome sight-threatening cornea conditions with novel medicines, devices, and surgical techniques.
Today, and over the course of this entire year, the Cornea Service is calling upon its devoted patients and colleagues to position the Service and Wills Eye Hospital for the next 70 years of unparalleled, groundbreaking achievements.
Diseases such as Fuchs, lattice, and granular corneal dystrophies, herpes simplex and herpes zoster keratitis, neurotrophic keratitis, severe ocular surface disease, and malpositioned/dislocated intraocular lenses require a high level of expertise, care, and focus to successfully treat them. Our department is one of the largest in the United States and treats thousands of patients each year from around the world. This high level of experience, as well as immediate proximity to our other subspecialties, allow us to optimally manage these diseases.
The transplantation of corneal tissue is an exacting and delicate process. Skilled case planning, graft positioning, suturing, and post-surgical management are critical factors in graft success and avoiding complications. Our department performs hundreds of corneal transplants each year and maintains close relationships with donor tissue organizations.
When organisms invade the cornea, it is often difficult to effectively eradicate them to avoid damage and loss of vision. Our team of Cornea subspecialists focuses on treating infections from a variety of pathogens including bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites such as acanthamoeba. We provide an urgent care setting for patients suffering from emergent cornea infections and needing immediate care and relief.
At Wills Eye, we believe that it is vital to enable our large and varied patient population to participate in the advancement of scientific knowledge. The development of new medicines, devices, and surgical techniques requires careful and exacting data collection that is used to determine safety and efficacy. Our Cornea clinician scientists partner with industry and our patients to help create the future solutions to today's challenges.
Cornea specialists from Wills Eye are world-renowned for their leadership in education and their generous sharing of research and knowledge. From key roles in professional societies to presentations at major medical conferences, these experts provide the latest information and insights related to cornea, refractive, and anterior segment that will protect patients' vision.
Our service trains 3 clinical fellows and 1 research fellow every year. We believe our clinical fellowship is among the strongest in the nation. On the Cornea Service, we see about 400 patients a week, and our clinical fellows participate in the evaluation and treatment of the majority of these patients. Each fellow typically graduates with over 100 corneal transplants as primary surgeon, and our fellowship graduates are extremely well-trained to medically and surgically treat a broad spectrum of corneal disease. Our research fellow is usually an international graduate who joins our Service from abroad for a year to collaborate on research projects with our faculty.
Philanthropy can play a vital role in advancing the mission of Wills Eye. Funding key leadership positions, capital improvements, educational and research funds, and other resources enable donors to have a significant impact on corneal care. We invite you to join us in improving the lives of those impacted. Your gift will make a difference.
- An endowed chair is one of the highest honors at any institution, acknowledging visionary leadership and providing consistent support for the Chairholder’s trailblazing work in ophthalmology. An Endowed Chair also brings recognition and prestige to the Chairholder, as well as flexibility to pursue opportunities that enhance the reputation of the Cornea Service.
- Renovations in the 9th floor Cornea Service suite will aim to improve the patient experience through a more functional design. This redesign of the clinical and diagnostic space will increase the number of exam rooms and ensuring ample space for additional testing equipment, improving patient flow. It will also enhance the teaching environment for residents and fellows and promote increased research activity.
- As one of the premier eye hospitals, our educational programs are highly competitive and provide a robust learning experience for young physicians. Our corneal fellows benefit from a broad range of surgical exposure and treat patients with the most complex eye conditions. They also have opportunities to advance their knowledge of the cornea by conducting high level, evidence-based research.
To learn more about these initiatives and other ways to support the Cornea Service,
contact Suzanne Beers at the Wills Eye Foundation, email@example.com.