Photo fo corneal recipient Carol

Each work day, Carol peered through a hospital microscope and diagnosed other people’s diseases, all the while contending with her own degenerative corneal condition called keratoconus. “I’ve had lousy vision ever since my senior year of high school,” she says. “I simply couldn’t see no matter how new my glasses were.”

What followed was years of trying different kinds of contact lenses, in different combinations, while the disease progressed and Carol’s eyesight worsened. But Carol persevered. She earned a degree in medical technology, pursued a full-time career as a clinical laboratory scientist, and. raised two sons. After 40 years of struggling, she sought out a corneal surgeon. “He took one look at my scarred corneas and said, ‘You need a transplant.'”

Since recovering from the surgery, Carol’s vision is so greatly improved that it’s changed her lifestyle. She can wear her contacts all day long, comfortably enough to keep at that microscope and then drive home safely. Her uncorrected vision is also better, no small matter for this exercise enthusiast. “I can go running without my contacts and not have to worry about falling into a hole,” says Carol. “It’s a life-altering event. I see better than I ever have in my life. Period.”