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Cornea. 2004 Oct;23(7):712-4.

Topical anesthesia for penetrating keratoplasty.

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Montgomery Eye Associates, Clinton, SC, USA.



To evaluate the use of topical anesthesia for penetrating keratoplasty (PKP) in situations where retrobulbar, peri/parabulbar, or general anesthesia are inadvisable or not readily available.


This was a retrospective analysis of a consecutive case series consisting of 8 eyes in 8 patients who had PKP with topical anesthesia between September 1995 and December 1997 in cases where retrobulbar, peri/parabulbar, or general anesthesia either could not be performed or presented too great a risk to the patient. Some cases were supplemented with small limbal injections, mild intravenous sedation (fentanyl), and/or intraocular anesthesia. In one case, intraocular 1% lidocaine was placed directly into the vitreous cavity to allow an open-sky vitrectomy.


In all cases, PKP was completed without complications. All patients tolerated the procedure well and reported only mild discomfort. However, in 2 cases, an ACIOL was left in place because lens manipulation caused pain in the ciliary body and iris root areas.


PKP can be performed successfully with topical anesthesia in cooperative patients who have perforated corneal ulcers, significant anticoagulation, or severe medical conditions, which make alternative forms of anesthesia more risky.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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