(MOOKP) is also known as “tooth in eye” surgery. It is a specialist surgical intervention that can restore meaningful vision to patients suffering from end stage corneal blindness, and for whom conventional corneal surgery is not possible for reasons such as severe ‘dry eyes’ causing heavy scarring of the cornea.
It includes removal of a tooth from the patient or a donor. After this, a lamina of tissue cut from the tooth is drilled and the hole is fitted with optics. The lamina is grown in the patients’ cheek for a period of months and then is implanted upon the eye. The surgery is performed usually in two stages spaced two to four months apart. The gap allows soft tissue to grow around the osteo-odonto lamina and for ocular surface reconstruction with buccal mucous membrane grafting to become vascularised.
MOOKP surgery is complex and requires meticulous care at each step to ensure the overall success rate. Therefore, surgeons who perform such surgeries are well-trained and experienced. This surgery is the only hope for restoring sight in the long term for desperate cases of corneal blindness not amenable to conventional corneal surgery.