WHAT IS THE AVELLINO DNA TEST USED FOR?
At King LASIK, Dr. Joseph King and his team are committed to patient safety, and therefore take extra efforts to ensure that they only perform LASIK surgery on appropriate LASIK candidates. The King LASIK ophthalmologist performs comprehensive eye exams to ensure that each patient’s eye anatomy and eye health do not preclude them from undergoing the procedure. And now the laser eye surgeons at King LASIK have one more tool available to help establish candidacy: the Avellino DNA test.
By administering the Avellino DNA test to potential LASIK patients, the ophthalmologist can see whether an individual carries the GCD1 or GCD2 gene mutation, which causes granular corneal dystrophy (GCD). GCD is a hereditary condition in which proteins accumulate on the cornea (the transparent tissue layer that forms the front of the eye), leading to clouded vision.
How Does Having GCD Affect LASIK Candidacy?
In patients without GCD, a particular protein appears on the cornea shortly after the LASIK procedure is performed. The protein eventually disappears as the eye heals. However, in individuals with GCD or type-2 GCD, also called Avellino corneal dystrophy, the protein reacts differently and continues to accumulate on the cornea, increasingly clouding the person’s vision. Ultimately, this can cause a complete loss of vision in patients with GCD. Therefore, individuals with visible GCD or the GCD gene mutation are not suitable candidates for LASIK surgery.
How Is the Avellino DNA Test Administered?
The Avellino DNA test is a quick, painless procedure during which a member of the King LASIK medical team uses cotton swabs to swipe the inside of each cheek, a total of 10 times. The swab samples are sent to a lab, and in about 48 hours, the lab results from the DNA test are returned to King LASIK. If the test comes back negative, the individual is clear to proceed with LASIK surgery. If the test comes back positive for the GCD gene mutation, the ophthalmologist will make alternative recommendations for vision correction treatment. Best of all, this innovative DNA test is included in the price of laser vision correction with King LASIK.