Corneal Disease

Our Cornea service is directed by Alan Leahey, MD, who completed a fellowship in cornea and external disease at The Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore. During fellowship, he trained under Walter Stark, MD, Terrence O’Brien, MD, John Gottsch, MD, Oliver Shine, MD and Dmitri Azar, MD in all aspects of corneal disease and corneal surgery

Dr. Leahey uses the latest diagnostic and surgical equipment to provide excellence in corneal care at our office.

Dry Eye

One of the most frequent ocular conditions seen in all individuals as they age. Irritation, burning, pain, fluctuating vision and tearing are common symptoms. Besides artificial tears, other options for treatment include medications, nutrition supplements, punctual occlusion and Lipiflow.

Blepharitis/Lid Margin Disease

This condition is often the cause of burning, excessive tearing, red eyes and red lids. Treatment includes medication, both by mouth and to the eye and lids with drops and ointment. Lid hygiene is also important in treating this condition

Recurrent Erosion

Painful, episodic breakdown of corneal surface early in morning when first waking up that is most often caused by a corneal dystrophy called map-dot-fingerprint. Can be treated with medication including drops,ointment and surgical procedures to stop pain.

Corneal Ulceration

Infectious or noninfectious melting of corneal seen with contact lens wear, autoimmune conditions, foreign bodies or trauma. This can usually be treated with very frequent application of medicated eye drops, but occasional requires surgical intervention.

Corneal Edema

(Swollen cornea) can be caused by numerous conditions. If medication does not reduce the swelling, then corneal transplant surgery can be performed. This involves replacing the diseased cornea or the effected part of the diseased cornea and replacing with a donor cornea. Dr. Leahey performs full thickness transplants and partial thickness transplants such as DSAEK and DMEK.

Corneal Dystrophies

These are conditions that affect both eyes and usually run in families. They can cause vision problems and pain. Often treated with corneal transplant. Fuchs dystrophy is the most common of the corneal dystrophies.


An irregular shape of the cornea that causes distorted vision corrected by rigid contact lenses or surgery

Corneal Transplant Surgery

The two most common methods that are used, depending on the underlying disease process are Penetrating Keratoplasty or Endothelial Keratoplasty ( DSAEK/DMEK). Penetrating Keratoplasty involves replacing the entire thickness of the cornea with donor tissue and has a longer recovery period. DSAEK involves replacing the back surface of the diseased cornea with a partial thickness donor cornea and has a much quicker recovery time. DMEK is using even thinner transplanted tissue for quicker recovery of vision.

Pterygium Surgery

Removal of a growth on the eye that involves the cornea and conjunctiva. These lesions develop from sun and wind exposure over years. Surgery indicated when lesion enlarges and threatens vision or causes pain.

Cancers of the Cornea and Conjunctiva

These are usually associated with sun exposure, but can also present has secondary tumors from cancer elsewhere. Local excisional biopsy usually performed.

Edta Chelation

A chemical and mechanical removal of calcium from the corneal surface.