2014

Improved Cornea Surgery Technique Provides Enhanced Transplant Success Researcher at American Academy of Ophthalmology Annual Meeting Describes

Advance in Treatment of Endothelial Disease



    NEW ORLEANS, Nov. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- In a research presentation today
 at the American Academy of Ophthalmology's Annual Meeting, Massimo Busin,
 MD, department head and professor of ophthalmology at the Villa Serena
 Hospital, Forli, Italy, described a technique that significantly improved
 results in patients being treated for endothelial disease of the cornea,
 the transparent covering of the front of the eye that provides much of its
 optical power. When the cell density in the endothelial layer is reduced
 below a level compatible with its normal function, the cornea swells and
 becomes less transparent, and vision is impaired.
     Since endothelial cells do not regenerate, the disease is treated by
 transplanting healthy donor tissue. The standard approach has been complete
 cornea transplantation (PK, or penetrating keratoplasy). Today, DSAEK
 (descemet-stripping automated endothelial keratoplasy)---where only
 endothelial tissue attached to a thin layer of deep stroma is transplanted
 and the normal structure of the recipient cornea is not disrupted--is
 increasingly preferred by corneal surgeons. Most patients receiving DSAEK
 recover good vision within weeks (versus six months to a year with PK), and
 the risk of complications during and after surgery is minimized. A
 significant drawback of DSAEK, though, has been the limited survival of the
 transplanted endothelium, with a reduction of up to 50 % of preoperative
 density as early as six months after DSAEK.
     Dr. Busin described a modified DSAEK technique developed by his group
 that resulted in rates of donor endothelial cells survival equivalent to
 PK.
     "Our approach reduced the rate of endothelial cell loss in the
 transplanted tissue to an average of 23% at one year post-surgery, which is
 similar to values recorded after PK," said Dr. Busin. "Our 'pull through'
 technique simplifies the DSAEK procedure and, more importantly, resolves
 the main obstacle that has delayed corneal surgeons' transition to DSAEK."
     About the American Academy of Ophthalmology
     AAO is the world's largest association of eye physicians and
 surgeons-Eye M.D.s-with more than 27,000 members worldwide. Eye health care
 is provided by the three "O's" - opticians, optometrists and
 ophthalmologists. It is the ophthalmologist, or Eye M.D., who can treat it
 all: eye diseases and injuries, and perform eye surgery. For more
 information, visit the Academy's Web site at www.aao.org.
 
 

SOURCE American Academy of Ophthalmology

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