Factors Limiting the Visual Outcome After Descemet Stripping Automated Endothelial Keratoplasty: Comprehensive Analysis Including the Graft Position and Irregularity

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Abstract

Purpose:

To investigate factors affecting best postoperative corrected distance visual acuity (CDVA) in patients who have undergone Descemet stripping automated endothelial keratoplasty (DSAEK).

Methods:

Forty-two eyes of 42 patients with predominantly non-Fuchs endothelial corneal dystrophy after DSAEK were retrospectively evaluated. All patients were examined using anterior segment optical coherence tomography when their best postoperative CDVA had been achieved. We analyzed the relationship between best postoperative CDVA and preoperative, intraoperative, and postoperative factors, including corneal higher-order aberrations (HOAs), corneal backward scattering, graft irregularity, and graft decentration. Variables with P < 0.2 in univariate analysis were entered into a multivariate linear regression model to determine the factors affecting best postoperative CDVA.

Results:

Mean CDVA improved from 1.16 ± 0.46 preoperatively to 0.22 ± 0.19 logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution equivalents postoperatively (P < 0.0001). Best postoperative CDVA was achieved 11.6 ± 7.7 months after DSAEK. Multivariate analysis showed that anterior corneal coma-like HOAs and venting incisions inside the pupil area were significantly correlated with best postoperative CDVA (t = 2.90, P = 0.006; t = 2.62, P = 0.01, respectively). No significant relationship was found between the visual outcome and any other factor, including posterior corneal HOAs, corneal backward scattering, graft decentration, and graft irregularity.

Conclusions:

Irregularity of the anterior corneal surface and venting incisions inside the pupil area are important factors that impair best postoperative CDVA in patients who have undergone DSAEK. In contrast, our results indicate that the graft position and irregularity might not have a strong influence on the visual outcome after DSAEK.

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