HF 4557

Home Care After Penetrating Keratoplasty Surgery

This handout tells you how to take care of yourself at home after penetrating keratoplasty surgery. Your nurse will review this with you. If you have any questions, please ask. 


You may take 2 Tylenol® tablets every 4 hours until you go to bed tonight. Do not take more than 4g of Tylenol® per day. This should decrease the mild pain you may have.

Eye Drops

Bring the eye drops prescribed for you to your clinic visit. The day after surgery, a staff member will explain the proper way to use the drops. You do not need to use the eye drops until your doctor removes the patch and shield.

Eye Patch

Leave your eye patch and shield in place. These will be removed in the clinic the next day. After that, you must always wear your glasses or the metal shield to protect your eye until it heals. When you lie down to nap or sleep, wear your metal shield until you are told you may stop using it. No soft patch under the shield is needed.


Resume your normal diet. Resume any and all normal medicines as you return home on the day of surgery.


  • You may resume all daily tasks such as walking and climbing stairs.

  • For the first 4 weeks, you should not do any strenuous activities. Do not bend over with your head below your waist.

  • Corneal transplant patients should not lift more than 20 pounds for one month.

  • You may use the shower or bathtub and wash your hair.

  • Reading or watching TV or movies will not strain your treated eye.

  • Take care that your treated eye is not bumped.

  • For two months, do not swim with your head under water.

  • You may resume sex when you feel ready.

When to Call 

  • New or increased drainage from the treated eye 

  • Increased or a change in eye pain

  • Increased redness of the eye

  • Increased blurry vision in the treated eye

  • If you have any questions or concerns

Treating problems early often results in simple, successful treatment so don’t delay. Waiting may lead to worse problems.

Who to Call

University Station Eye Clinic, 8 am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday 

(608) 263-7171

When the clinic is closed, your call will be sent to the paging operator. Ask for the “eye resident on call.” Give your name and number with area code. The doctor will call you back.

The toll-free number is: 1-800-323-8942. Ask to be transferred to the above number.