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Izvestia Journal of the Union of Scientists - Varna. Medicine and Ecology Series

Transplantation in ophthalmic practice in Bulgaria - a study based on a questionnaire survey

Dimitar Grupchev


The purpose is to study transplantation habits in ophthalmology in Bulgaria based on the opinion of experienced surgeons. The pillars are: type of transplant performed, the geographical distribution of the treatment, surgical experience and eye bank utilization.

Materials and Methods:
For the purpose of the study, a questionnaire was developed and distributed to 42 Bulgarian ophthalmologists with a recognized proficiency in ophthalmology and active records in transplantation based on the Executive Medical Agency.

The questionnaire was completed by 38 Bulgarian ophthalmology specialists with a strong interest in corneal and amniotic membrane transplantation. Ophthalmic transplantation in Bulgaria is concentrated in Sofia and Varna - the cities where there are eye and tissue banks. Private hospitals and centers are in serious competition with the specialists from the university centers. In Bulgaria, more specialists perform amniotic membrane transplantation in Varna.
Nationwide over 90% of cases performed are penetration corneal grafts, and only 2% are lamellar keratoplasty. Tissue supply and bank utilization are uneven.

Bulgaria has the potential to develop corneal and amniotic membrane transplantation in ophthalmology, as well as in the development of bio-analogues. The rapid introduction of new methods for the treatment of the anterior ocular surface is important for improving the quality of life and vision of the patients. The application of new technologies in surgical treatment of the anterior ocular surface provides greater efficiency and better quality of ophthalmic care. Training ophthalmic surgeons in new methodology based on regenerative therapy and transplantation is an important prerequisite for improving the ophthalmic care in the country.


corneal transplantation, amniotic membrane transplantation, penetrating keratoplasty, lamellar keratoplasty, eye bank

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