Plans afoot to establish an eye bank in Abu Dhabi

Ashwani Kumar /Abu Dhabi Filed on October 30, 2020
Specialists at the SKMC during a recent corneal transplant procedure. (Supplied photo)

Currently, the Sheikh Khalifa Medical City gets corneal layers from the US for its transplant procedures.

The Sheikh Khalifa Medical City (SKMC), the first transplant centre in the UAE, is planning to establish an eye bank in Abu Dhabi.

Dr Murad Manea Al Obthani, consultant ophthalmologist at SKMC, said that currently, the medical centre gets corneal layers from a US eye bank for its transplant procedures.

“We are currently seeking to establish an eye bank in Abu Dhabi, which will cover the needs of the UAE hospitals.”

Dr Al Obthani noted that the SKMC has been carrying out corneal transplants for more than 10 years at a rate of 40 transplants per year. Fifteen per cent of this annual number of patients are children, he added.

The success rate for corneal transplant is high but patients, especially youngsters, will need regular check-ups, Dr Al Obthani said.

“Corneal transplantation is the first step, followed by careful and long-term medical follow-up to prevent any potential complications, such as infections, high intraocular pressure and rejection of the new transplanted cornea, indicating that these complications increase significantly in children. Those who suffer from corneal problems are in urgent need of rehabilitation and care to retain a clear vision,” he added.


Ashwani Kumar

I am a newspaperman from the emirate of Abu Dhabi. A journalist at heart. I get my stories from the streets. A south Indian born in the Hindi heartland, I easily connect with people from different nationalities and cultures. I am calm like a monk, sensitive and very patient reporter. On the ground, I cover a range of topics related to community, health, embassy, tourism, transport, business and sports. I will go out on a leg to do what’s right and stand by what I believe in.

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