Corneal Tomography Changes and Refractive Outcomes After Descemet Stripping Without Endothelial Keratoplasty

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Purpose:To investigate corneal tomography changes and refractive outcomes after Descemetorhexis without endothelial keratoplasty (DWEK).Methods:Retrospective chart review of 25 eyes from 16 patients with Fuchs corneal endothelial dystrophy that underwent successful DWEK combined with cataract surgery.Results:There was no significant change in anterior corneal curvature on tomography maps. However, all tomography maps demonstrated an increase in central posterior float and all but one demonstrated a decrease in pachymetry after DWEK. Only 7 of 25 eyes had increased irregular astigmatism on tomography after DWEK, of which 57% had preexisting irregular astigmatism before the procedure. The mean difference between the targeted and outcome refraction was +0.65 diopters (D) at the time of corneal clearance, but this improved to +0.38 D 1 month after corneal clearance. Postoperative refraction was within 1 D of target refraction for 92% of cases (23 eyes) but within 0.5 D of target refraction for only 48% of cases (12 eyes). The differences between expected and actual refractive outcomes were correlated with change in posterior corneal curvature and pachymetry.Conclusions:DWEK induces an increased central posterior float localized to the site of Descemet membrane stripping, confirming the need for centralized stripping. Irregular astigmatism can occur after DWEK but is typically minimal and occurs more commonly in the setting of preoperative irregular astigmatism. DWEK induces about a 0.5 D hyperopic shift, which should be considered when determining intraocular lens power with simultaneous surgery.

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