To compare the results of microkeratome-assisted sutureless anterior lamellar keratoplasty (SALK) with and without phacoemulsification.
In this retrospective comparative interventional case series, patients with superficial anterior corneal opacity were divided into 2 groups. Eyes in group 1 (n = 6) had associated cataract and underwent SALK with phacoemulsification surgery (SALK triple). Eyes in group 2 (n = 6) did not have cataract and underwent only anterior lamellar keratoplasty. A 200-μm microkeratome head was used for host and donor cut. Fibrin glue was applied at the graft–host junction. Visual acuity, refractive error, topographic changes, and pachymetry were noted.
Mean follow-up was 9 ± 2.7 months. The best spectacle-corrected visual acuity (BSCVA) improved significantly over the preoperative value in both the groups at 1 month, 6 months, and the last follow-up (P = 0.028). The mean gain in BSCVA was 8.8 ± 3.4 lines and 6.8 ± 5.2 lines, respectively, for groups 1 and 2 at the last follow-up, with no statistically significant difference in the BSCVA of both groups at the last follow-up (P = 0.80). There was no statistical difference at the last follow-up between the 2 groups with respect to spherical equivalent (P = 0.6), cylinder (P = 0.81), topographic astigmatism (P = 0.75), and graft thickness (P = 0.81). One patient in group 1 underwent graft rejection, which completely reversed with treatment. No cases of graft dislocation, infection, epithelial ingrowth, vascularization, or recurrence of primary pathology were noted in either group.
SALK triple is an effective surgery for early visual rehabilitation of patients with superficial anterior corneal opacity and concomitant cataract.