The NZ Eye Bank has been collecting and publishing statistics about eye banking and corneal transplantation in New Zealand since 1991.
The majority of donors are referred from public hospitals or are donating other tissues or organs.
Over 70% of donors come from outside Auckland. A significant number come from Eye Banks in Australia.
The majority of donors are over 50 years old.
The number of corneas transplanted has been rising throughout the life of the Eye Bank. Very few are unable to be used.
Corneas are transplanted throughout New Zealand but the majority are transplanted in Auckland.
Most corneas are transplanted in public hospitals.
In New Zealand, the most common presenting disease requiring a sight-restoring corneal graft is keratoconus. Grafts can eventually fail so as the recipient population grows more people are requiring a regraft.
The earlier peak is people with Keratoconus. Later in life larger numbers of people require a corneal graft for diseases like Fuchs' Dystrophy.
The majority of corneal grafts are full thickness Penetrating Keratoplasties (PK). Increasingly only the damaged layers of the cornea are replaced - either just the back of the cornea with a Descemet's Stripping Automated Endothelial Keratoplasty (DSAEK) or Descemet's Membrane Endothelial Keratoplasty (DMEK), or the front of the cornea with a Deep Anterior Lamellar Keratoplasty (DALK). DSAEK/DMEK is used to repair disease damage from conditions like Fuchs' Dystrophy, and DALK is used to repair disease damage from Keratoconus.
The number of sclera transplanted has increased significantly over the lifetime of the Eye Bank. Sclera are used for orbital implants when someone has had an eye removed, as an emergency patch when someone has an perforated eye, or for glaucoma surgery.
Lu LM, Boyle AB, Niederer RL, Brookes NH, McGhee CN, Patel DV. (2019). Repeat corneal transplantation in Auckland, New Zealand: indications, visual outcomes and risk factors for repeat keratoplasty failure. Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology. 47(8):987-994. doi: 10.1111/ceo.13581.
Kim BZ, Meyer JJ, Brookes NH, Moffatt SL, Twohill HC, Pendergrast DG, Sherwin T, McGhee CHJ. (2017). New Zealand trends in corneal transplantation over the 25 years 1991 to 2015. British Journal of Ophthalmology. 101:834-838. doi:10.1136/bjophthalmol-2016-309021
Cunningham WJ, Moffatt L, Brookes NH, Twohill H, Pendergrast D, Stewart JM and McGhee CNJ. (2012). The New Zealand National Eye Bank Study: Trends in the acquisition and storage of corneal tissue over the decade 2000-2009. Cornea. 31(5):538-45. doi: 10.1097/ico.0b013e318222c3f2
Cunningham WJ, Brookes NH, Twohill HC, Moffatt SL, Pendergrast DGC, Stewart JM, McGhee CNJ. (2012). Trends in the distribution of donor corneal tissue and indications for corneal transplantation: the New Zealand National Eye Bank Study 2000-2009. Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology 40(2):141-7. doi: 10.1111/j.1442-9071.2011.02681.x
Patel HY, Ormonde S, Brookes NH, Moffatt L, Sherwin T, Pendergrast D and McGhee CNJ. (2011). The New Zealand National Eye Bank: Survival and visual outcome one year following corneal transplantation. Cornea. 30(7):760-4. doi: 10.1097/ico.0b013e3182014668
Patel HY, Brookes NH, Moffatt L, Sherwin T, Ormonde S, McGhee CNJ. (2005). The New Zealand National Eye Bank Study 1991-2003: A Review of the Source and Management of Corneal Tissue. Cornea. 24(5):576-82, 2005. doi: 10.1097/01.ico.0000155035.55751.b2
Patel HY, Ormonde S, Brookes NH, Moffatt L and McGhee CNJ. (2005). The indications and outcomes of paediatric corneal transplantation in New Zealand: 1991-2003. British Journal of Ophthalmology 89: 404-408. doi: 10.1136/bjo.2004.053116