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Suture-related complications following keratoplasty: a 5-year retrospective study.

Cornea 2001, vol. 20, issue 8

PURPOSE

To study the incidence of suture-related complications following penetrating keratoplasty (PK) and their effect on the success of corneal grafting.

METHODS

The records of 332 patients receiving 361 grafts in 1993 and 1994 were reviewed, and suture-related complications were recorded. These complications were divided into five groups: suture erosions, infiltrates at the suture sites, infectious keratitis, loose sutures with imminent wound dehiscence, and wound dehiscence after suture removal.

RESULTS

Occurrence rates were suture erosions, 10.8%; infiltrates, 9.4%; infectious keratitis related to sutures, 3.3%; loose sutures with imminent wound separation in need of surgical repair, 8.3%; and wound dehiscence following suture removal, 2.4%.

CONCLUSIONS

Suture-related complications frequently occur after PK. Infectious keratitis and wound separations needing surgical repair may lead to loss of best-corrected visual acuity due to scarring, induced allograft reactions, and/or increased astigmatism. Recommendations for post-PK suture management are proposed.

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