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Ophthalmology. 2012 Oct;119(10):1982-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ophtha.2012.04.031. Epub 2012 Jun 15.

Descemet's stripping endothelial keratoplasty: long-term graft survival and risk factors for failure in eyes with preexisting glaucoma.

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Cornea Research Foundation of America, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA.



To evaluate long-term corneal graft survival and risk factors for graft failure after Descemet's stripping endothelial keratoplasty (DSEK) in eyes with preexisting glaucoma.


Retrospective case control study.


A total of 835 DSEK cases performed by a single surgeon between December 2003 and August 2007 were reviewed. Only the first treated eye of each patient with at least 1 year follow-up was included, resulting in 453 cases; 342 had no prior glaucoma (C), 65 had medically managed preexisting glaucoma (G), and 46 had prior glaucoma surgery (GS).


Corneal graft failure was defined as persistent corneal edema resulting in irreversible loss of optical clarity. Corneal graft survival in the 3 groups was calculated using Kaplan-Meier survival analysis. Nine potential risk factors for graft failure were evaluated by Cox proportional hazards univariate and multivariate analysis. These methods took length of follow-up into consideration.


Corneal graft survival and risk factors influencing long-term corneal endothelial failure.


The 1-, 2-, 3-, 4-, and 5-year graft survival was 99%, 99%, 97%, 97%, and 96%, respectively, in group C; 100%, 98%, 98%, 96%, and 90%, respectively, in group G; and 96%, 91%, 84%, 69%, and 48%, respectively, in group GS (P < 0.001). In the GS group, the 5-year survival rate for eyes with a glaucoma drainage device (GDD) and those with trabeculectomy only was 25% and 59%, respectively. Indication for DSEK, surgically managed glaucoma, type and number of prior glaucoma surgeries, and occurrence of a rejection episode were the significant risk factors for graft survival in univariate analysis. Several factors were correlated; in a multivariate model, prior glaucoma surgery (P < 0.0001) and a prior rejection episode (0.0023) were the significant risk factors for corneal endothelial failure.


Patients with medically managed glaucoma had significantly better 5-year graft survival than those with surgically managed glaucoma. A prior glaucoma shunt or trabeculectomy significantly increased the risk of DSEK endothelial failure.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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