Changes in the ABCD Keratoconus Grade After Intracorneal Ring Segment Implantation

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To assess the changes in the ABCD keratoconus staging system 6 months after intracorneal ring segment implantation.


Fifty eyes of 50 patients with keratoconus who were implanted with the Keraring (Mediphacos, Belo Horizonte, Brazil) using the femtosecond laser were assessed. Preoperative and postoperative assessments included determination of distance uncorrected visual acuity and distance corrected visual acuity (DCVA), refraction, and Scheimpflug tomography with the Pentacam HR. In the ABCD keratoconus staging system, the elements A, B, C, and D stand for anterior and posterior radii of curvature in a 3.0-mm zone centered on the thinnest point (TP), corneal thickness at the TP, and DCVA, respectively.


Keraring implantation produced significant flattening changes (preoperatively vs. postoperatively) in the anterior (6.60 ± 0.48 vs. 7.22 ± 0.57 mm, P < 0.001) and posterior (4.99 ± 0.47 vs. 5.16 ± 0.53 mm, P = 0.002) radii of curvature of the 3-mm zone centered on the corneal TP associated with a statistically significant improvement in the DCVA (0.56 ± 0.24 vs. 0.70 ± 0.22 in the decimal notation, P = 0.001) with no significant change in the corneal thickness at the TP (P = 0.285). The most changes occurred in element A of the ABCD keratoconus classification. Also, a 1-stage change was observed for element B, whereas elements C and D did not show changes in their postoperative stages after ring implantation. ABCD keratoconus staging before ring implantation was A2B3C2D1 and changed to A1B2C2D1 6 months after surgery.


The ABCD staging system provides a more comprehensive guide that better illustrates the structural changes and visual acuity as one aspect of visual function after the implantation of the intrastromal corneal ring segments.

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