Preoperative risk factors for surface disease after penetrating keratoplasty

Mark J Mannis, Karla Zadnik, Mark R. Miller, Margaret Marquez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


We sought to identify the types of, prevalence of, and predisposing factors for the development of surface keratopathy after penetrating keratoplasty. We reviewed the records of 120 corneal grafts performed over a 15-month period. Twenty patients were excluded from the study. Fifty-three men and 47 women composed the group studied. All transplants were performed by the same surgeon. Retrospective data from patients' records were gathered preoperatively and from postoperative visits at 1 week and at 1, 2, 3, and 4 months. Data included preoperative medical and demographic data, operative time, postoperative medication regimens, assessment of the presence and degree, if present, of punctate epithelial keratopathy (PEK), hurricane keratopathy, macroepithelial defects, microcystic edema, bullous edema, and filamentary keratitis. In addition, information on the donor material was recorded. Surface disease and normal groups were compared to identify risk factors for the occurrence of surface abnormalities. Thirty-three of the patients demonstrated persistent surface abnormalities. Coarse PEK was the most common surface abnormality in the sample studied and was most prominent in the first week after surgery. Postoperative surface keratopathy was not statistically associated with preoperative diagnosis, donor age. death-to- preservation time, preservation-to-surgery time, or donor epithelial status. However, corneal recipients in the group with surface keratopathy were significantly older (mean, 68.7 years) than patients in the group with no surface abnormalities (mean, 52.6 years; Mann-Whitney U test, p < 0.001). Although many factors may contribute to the normal integrity of the corneal surface after keratoplasty, recipient age is of key importance in the development of surface disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7-11
Number of pages5
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1997


  • Filamentary keratitis
  • Hurricane keratopathy
  • Penetrating keratoplasty
  • Punctate epithelial keratopathy
  • Surface keratoplasty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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