Evaluation of Prior Photorefractive Keratectomy in Donor Tissue

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To describe a case in which an eye donor had prior bilateral photorefractive keratectomies and to elucidate possible methods of evaluation and screening of donor tissue.


Case report. A 62-year-old eye donor was reported to have received radial keratotomy before his death. Further investigation by the eye bank showed a history of photorefractive keratectomy (PRK), not radial keratotomy. The corneas were therefore not used for transplantation, and the eyes were evaluated by slit-lamp examination, photography, corneal topography, and histology.


Slit-lamp and photographic examination did not indicate the presence of PRK ablations. Corneal topography mapping with the TMS-1 was relatively ambiguous for identifying PRK flattening, while multiple data formatting of the cornea with the Orbscan resulted in the strongest suggestion of prior PRK. Histologic analysis showed central corneal thinning and loss of Bowman's membrane consistent with PRK.


In the absence of a positive donor history for PRK, current methods of screening donor tissue for prior PRK often are insufficient to exclude these corneas from use in transplantation. More refined placido imagery corneal topography or newer technologies such as the Orbscan may allow more sensitive and specific methods of donor tissue screening.

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