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December 1964

Deep-Frozen Full-Thickness Corneal Grafts

Arch Ophthalmol. 1964;72(6):741-742. doi:10.1001/archopht.1964.00970020741001

Three centuries after Sir Robert Boyle first described his "new experiments touching cold," showing how frogs could survive freezing in a block of ice, we are still hard at it. For hypothermia has again become an exciting issue of utmost importance in our contemporary physick; and new experiments touching the frozen cornea are among the most momentous today, in a world where, at any rate in underdeveloped countries, about a sixth of those who are blind have scarred corneas (Bisley, 1964), and a graft might well restore their sight. The barrier to achieving this is not so much the shortage of skilled surgeons, for the techniques are well established and not too difficult to learn, but primarily a shortage of donor eyes.

A handful of countries are fortunate in having well-organized eye banks that can just cope with their local needs; elsewhere the blind remain blind. If only a satisfactory