Deep Anterior Lamellar Keratoplasty After Descemet Stripping Automated Endothelial Keratoplasty

Shay Gutfreund*, Pia Leon, Shmuel Graffi, Massimo Busin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose To report the indications and long-term outcomes of deep anterior lamellar keratoplasty (DALK) performed after Descemet stripping automated endothelial keratoplasty (DSAEK) in cases of visually significant stromal opacities. Design Retrospective, interventional, consecutive case series. Methods SETTING: Private hospital. STUDY POPULATION: Thirteen eyes that underwent DALK after DSAEK at our institution. Indications for DALK after DSAEK included both stromal opacities persisting after DSAEK and stromal opacities occurring secondarily in post-DSAEK corneas. DALK was always performed in a standardized fashion including exchange of a disc of full-thickness recipient cornea (up to the DSAEK stromal surface),7.0 mm in diameter, with a donor lamella obtained by microkeratome-assisted dissection, punched to 7.0 mm and sutured into place with a double running 10-0 nylon suture. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Best spectacle-corrected visual acuity (BSCVA), manifest refraction, and endothelial cell density (ECD). Results Mean follow-up was 26 ± 18 months (range = 6–60 months). Indications for DSAEK were full-thickness graft failure (n = 8), DSAEK graft failure (n = 3), and pseudophakic bullous keratopathy (n = 2). Indications for subsequent DALK were persisting stromal opacity (n = 9) and stromal opacities newly occurred after DSAEK as a result of HSV keratitis (n = 2) or interface infection (n = 2). After complete suture removal, mean BSCVA was 20/28 (0.14 ± 0.8 logMAR) in eyes without ocular comorbidities affecting visual acuity (n = 7), while refractive astigmatism was within 4 diopter (D) in all but 1 eye (average = 3.2 ± 1.4 D). No intraoperative complications were recorded. Conclusions Performing DALK on DSAEK eliminates the need for open-sky surgery, achieving visual results comparable to those of penetrating keratoplasty, while sparing a healthy endothelial graft.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-136
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Ophthalmology
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2017
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'Deep Anterior Lamellar Keratoplasty After Descemet Stripping Automated Endothelial Keratoplasty'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this