Purpose: To assess the possible damage to ocular tissues during treatment of keratoconus with UV-A-riboflavin corneal collagen cross-linking (CXL).
Design: Single center, prospective, interventional study.
Methods: Fourteen eyes of 14 patients aged 28.2 ± 5.9 (mean ± SD) years with progressive keratoconus were treated with UV-A-riboflavin CXL. Corneal endothelium was assessed with the endothelial specular microscope. Central retina was assessed with biomicroscopy fundus examination and with optical coherence tomography using macular thickness protocol. Patients were assessed preoperatively, at week 1, month 1, 3, 6, 9, and 12 after treatment.
Results: Comparative preoperative and postoperative results showed stable endothelial cell density (2730 cells/mm2, 2793 cells/mm2, and 2640 cells/mm2, preoperatively, at month 6, and at month 12, respectively) and stable foveal thickness (203, 202, and 205 μm, preoperatively, at month 6, and at month 12, respectively). No morphological abnormalities were noted.
Conclusions: UV-A-riboflavin CXL seems to be a safe procedure that does not cause damage to the corneal endothelium and central retina.