There are many causes of blindness including accidents and disease. It can occur over time or abruptly. Its impact on one’s quality of life and self-sufficiency is severe. We rely on our eyes to care for ourselves, to work and to navigate our world. It is one of our five senses that paints the pictures in our head of our loved ones’ faces, our surroundings and all things that we come in contact with. Without our sight, our independence is limited, and we need accommodations to perform most basic daily tasks.
It is estimated that 60,000 people are born with birth defects that cause progressive blindness due to ocular surface failure and another 100,000 people will have a chemical or thermal accidents each year that impairs their sight. Dr. Holland has developed the Ocular Transplantation Team and have developed surgical techniques to restore sight for those with these conditions. Severe Ocular Surface Disease is characterized by an injury or disease that affects the outer layer of the surface of the eye (conjunctiva, limbal stem cells and cornea). Patients with severe Ocular Surface Disease have chronic eye pain and severe visual loss. They are not eligible for standard corneal transplantation because of the injury to their stem cells. Ocular Surface Stem Cell Transplantation and subsequent corneal transplantation are most often required to regain functional vision.
It is estimated that 60,000 people are born with birth defects that cause progressive blindness due to ocular surface failure. Another 100,000 people will have a chemical or thermal accident each year that impairs their sight. The goal of the Holland Foundation for Sight Restoration – established as a 501(c)(3) - is to address a significant unmet need of corneal transplantation for patients who have Severe Ocular Surface Disease. The Foundation is raising funds to provide financial resources for surgeons and patients so they may have the availability for this advanced care. The Foundation is led by Dr. Edward Holland, a pioneering ophthalmologist in the treatment of Severe Ocular Surface Disease. It is the only foundation of its kind in the nation.