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Ipsilateral limbal translocation for treatment of partial limbal deficiency secondary to ocular alkali burn
  1. M Cristina Nishiwaki-Dantas,
  2. Paulo Elias Correa Dantas,
  3. José Ricardo A Reggi
  1. Department of Ophthalmology, Santa Casa of São Paulo, Corneal and External Disease Service, Ocular Emergency Service, São Paulo, Brazil
  1. M Cristina Nishiwaki-Dantas, Rua Martinico Prado 26, conj 181/182, São Paulo Brazil CEP 01224-010speyecare{at}


BACKGROUND/AIM Chemical ocular burn, especially by alkali, may result in damage to the limbal stem cells, fundamental in maintaining the integrity of ocular surface. Clinically, patients manifest abnormal conjunctival-corneal healing with peripheral neovessels, chronic epithelial defect, severe stromal inflammation, and conjunctivalisation of the corneal, which is characteristic of limbal deficiency. Penetrating keratoplasty has a poor prognosis in these cases. Available therapeutic options included limbal autograft and allograft transplantation associated or not with human amniotic membrane transplant. The authors propose an alternative treatment with ipsilateral autologous limbal transplantation, transferring the healthy portion of the limbus from the partially burned eye to the deficient area in patients with partial limbal deficiency secondary to alkali burn.

METHODS Ipsilateral limbal autografts were performed in five patients with partial limbal deficiency secondary to alkali burn, transferring the healthy portion of the limbus to the burned area of the same eye, without intervening in the contralateral eye.

RESULTS All cases had regression of the limbal deficiency with improvement of visual acuity to a minimum of 20/60–20/20 (partial), without complications during the follow up period (range 7–11 months).

CONCLUSION Ipsilateral autologous limbal autograft is a therapeutic option for partial limbal deficient eyes.

  • limbal deficiency
  • limbal stem cell
  • ocular burn
  • corneal surgery

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