A new surgical technique for deep stromal, anterior lamellar keratoplasty
- Gerrit R J Mellesa,
- Frank Landerb,
- Frank J R Rietveldc,
- Lies Remeijera,
- W Houdijn Beekhuisa,
- Perry S Binderd
- aRotterdam Eye Hospital, Netherlands, bDutch Ophthalmic Research Center, Zuidland, Netherlands, cDepartment of Pathology, University of Nijmegen, Netherlands, dVision Surgery and Laser Center, San Diego, USA
- Gerrit R J Melles, MD, Rotterdam Eye Hospital, Schiedamse Vest 180, PO Box 70030, 3000 LM Rotterdam, Netherlands.
- Accepted 28 September 1998
AIMS To describe a new surgical technique for deep stromal anterior lamellar keratoplasty.
METHODS In eye bank eyes and sighted human eyes, aqueous was exchanged by air, to visualise the posterior corneal surface−that is, the “air to endothelium” interface. Through a 5.0 mm scleral incision, a deep stromal pocket was created across the cornea, using the air to endothelium interface as a reference plane for dissection depth. The pocket was filled with viscoelastic, and an anterior corneal lamella was excised. A full thickness donor button was sutured into the recipient bed after stripping its Descemet’s membrane.
RESULTS In 25 consecutive human eye bank eyes, a 12% microperforation rate was found. Corneal dissection depth averaged 95.4% (SD 2.7%). Six patient eyes had uneventful surgeries; in a seventh eye, perforation of the lamellar bed occurred. All transplants cleared. Central pachymetry ranged from 0.62 to 0.73 mm.
CONCLUSION With this technique a deep stromal anterior lamellar keratoplasty can be performed with the donor to recipient interface just anterior to the posterior corneal surface. The technique has the advantage that the dissection can be completed in the event of inadvertent microperforation, or that the procedure can be aborted to perform a planned penetrating keratoplasty.