Aims To compare the efficacy of compression sutures combined with intracameral air injection (CSAI) and thermokeratoplasty (TKP) for the management of acute corneal hydrops in keratoconus.
Methods In this multi-centre randomised clinical trial, 20 patients with keratoconus (20 eyes) with acute corneal hydrops were enrolled and randomised to receive either CSAI or TKP and followed-up for a period of 6 months.
Results There were no significant differences in patient demographics, severity of corneal hydrops and preoperative duration of symptoms between the two groups. In both groups, corneal oedema resolved within 2 weeks. The maximum thickness of the corneal scars following CSAI and TKP was not significantly different. Best spectacle-corrected visual acuity was superior in the CSAI group at 6-month follow-up (CSAI vs TKP, 0.52 (0.37, 0.85) vs 0.96 (0.70, 1.34) LogMAR, p=0.042). CSAI resulted in greater corneal endothelial cell density (CSAI vs TKP, 2677.8±326.7 vs 1955.3±298.1 cells/mm2, p<0.001) and flatter corneal curvature (CSAI vs TKP: mean keratometry value, 52.13±4.92 vs 63.51±5.83D, p<0.001; maximum keratometry value, 65.21±7.42 vs 77.13±12.01D, p=0.016) at the 6-month follow-up.
Conclusion Although both CSAI and TKP resulted in resolution of acute corneal hydrops in keratoconus, CSAI was associated with superior clinical outcomes in this study.
Chinese Clinical trial registration number ChiCTR-IOR-17013764
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