The cornea is the clear, transparent dome at the front of the eye. Together with the film of tears on its surface, it provides most of the focusing power of the eye. It also contributes to the reflex of blinking.
The layer of cells on the corneal surface is constantly being replenished from stem cells located at the edge of the cornea or limbus. This layer physically supports the overlying tear film from which it receives nutrition, including oxygen and glucose.
The tears also contain antibodies which help protect the cornea from infection. This cornea is part of the involuntary protective reflex of blinking. Blinking spreads the tear film evenly over the cornea and assists with the circulation of tear fluid into the tear duct.
Corneal health and clarity are important for vision and comfort. Different conditions can compromise the health of the eyes.
Eye drops are an effective form of drug delivery to the cornea. The categories of drops used in the treatment of corneal diseases include:
Surgery and laser are also effective tools sometimes used in modifying corneal disease.