In February 2016 Donna Garner suddenly experienced severe pain in both eyes. She saw several doctors over the course of three months and was finally diagnosed with Acanthamoeba Keratitis, a rare eye infection. About a month after being diagnosed, Donna lost complete sight in her right eye. Her doctor prescribed medication that had to be taken hourly for several months to try to kill the amoeba. The medication was successful in her left eye, and she regained sight. But, unfortunately, the amoeba caused severe damage and scarring to her right eye; and her doctor decided she needed a penetrating keratoplasty, commonly known as a full-thickness cornea transplant, in June 2017.
“Before the transplant, I couldn’t see much. Only a flicker of light- hand wave movement as my doctor described it. I am so grateful to see objects, textures and color and to have depth perception once again!”
She is unsure how she acquired the infection. It is more common in people that wear contact lenses- and Donna has for 50 years- but she is and always has been careful to properly disinfect them. She belongs to an online support group for corneal transplant recipients.