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Ophthalmology. 2009 Sep;116(9):1644-50. doi: 10.1016/j.ophtha.2009.05.034. Epub 2009 Jul 29.

Visual acuity and intraocular pressure after Descemet's stripping endothelial keratoplasty in eyes with and without preexisting glaucoma.

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Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago, 1855 W. Taylor Street, Chicago, IL 60612, USA.



(1) To characterize the pattern of intraocular pressure (IOP) changes after Descemet's stripping endothelial keratoplasty (DSEK) in patients without preexisting glaucoma and in those with preexisting glaucoma, with and without prior glaucoma surgery. (2) To compare vision and IOP outcomes among the 3 groups.


A retrospective chart review.


A total of 805 DSEK cases performed in 641 patients by a single surgeon from December 2003 to August 2007 were available in the database. Only the first-treated eye of each patient with at least 1-year follow-up was included. Four hundred cases qualified: 315 eyes had no glaucoma (C); 64 eyes had glaucoma with no previous glaucoma surgery (G); and 21 eyes had prior glaucoma surgery (GS). Eyes with preexisting retinal problems were included in the analysis.


Data analysis included calculation of incidence of postoperative IOP elevation. The study criteria for postoperative IOP elevation were IOP > or =24 mmHg or IOP increase > or =10 mmHg from baseline. Kruskal-Wallis test was used to compare visual acuity (VA) and IOP among the 3 groups preoperatively and at 1-, 3-, 6-, and 12-month postoperative visits.


Visual acuity (Snellen) and IOP (millimeters of mercury).


The incidence of postoperative IOP elevation by the study criteria was 35%, 45%, and 43% for groups C, G, and GS, respectively. Elevated IOP was medically managed by initiating or increasing glaucoma medications or reducing steroids in 27%, 44%, and 38% of the patients in groups C, G, and GS, respectively. A subsequent glaucoma procedure was performed in 0.3%, 5%, and 19% of patients in groups C, G, and GS, respectively. Only the control group had statistically significant IOP elevation at 12 months (median increase of 2 mmHg) when compared with baseline (P<0.0001). All 3 groups had statistically significant improvement in vision at 12 months when compared with baseline (12-month median VA = 20/40 for C and G; and 20/50 for GS, P<0.0001).


All groups had a substantial incidence of IOP elevation after DSEK. Close monitoring of IOP is warranted. In this cohort, preexisting glaucoma did not seem to have a negative effect on VA after DSEK.


Proprietary or commercial disclosure may be found after the references.

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