Get the facts
There is a lot of misinformation around the subject of cornea donation, but the reality is that it can mean the gift of sight to someone desperately in need of a transplant.
We want you to be able to make an informed decision about whether or not to donate your corneas, so we've addressed some common misconceptions below.
Make sure you have the facts.
The eye is never transplanted whole
The cornea is transplanted which is the clear outer layer at the front of the eye that helps the eye to focus light.
Cornea donation does not affect how a donor looks
After donation, our specialist team will ensure the donor maintains a natural appearance. Many donors go on to have an open casket funeral.
Cornea donation does not delay a donor's funeral
Cornea donation does not delay any funeral arrangements, and our specialist nurses always speak to the family to see if there are considerations around someone’s faith, beliefs or culture in respect to funeral plans.
Poor eyesight does not stop you donating your corneas
People with poor eyesight can still donate their corneas. Many conditions that affect a person's eyesight do not affect the corneas directly, meaning it can still be possible to donate.
Cancer doesn't stop you donating your corneas
People with most types of cancer can still donate their corneas. The corneas do not contain blood vessels, eliminating the risk of transmitting most types of cancer.
Donation does not need to take place immediately
You can donate your corneas up to 24 hours after you die and donation can take place after death in hospital, in hospices, or in funeral homes.
The gift of sight
It’s such a shame that myths put people off donating. I know some people are squeamish but cornea donation is about the gift of sight.
Mum of CBeebies star and cornea recipient Angharad Rhodes
English organ donation law has changed
You still have a choice about whether or not you wish to become a donor.
Have you registered your organ donation decision?
Organ donation law where you live
Organ donation laws vary in different countries across the United Kingdom.
Refer a tissue donor
If you would like to refer a potential tissue donor, please call the Tissues National Referral Centre on:
0800 432 0559