Purpose: To evaluate the safety and efficacy of nonpreserved amniotic membrane transplantation (AMT) with or without limbal autograft transplantation (LAT) in management of acute and chronic chemical eye injuries.
Methods: Amniotic membrane transplantation or AMT + LAT was performed on nine eyes of seven consecutive patients, five eyes with acute chemical burn and four eyes with limbal stem cell deficiency secondary to previous chemical burn. Nonpreserved amniotic membrane was used in all procedures.
Results: Five patients (71.5%) were men and two (28.5%) were women. The average age at the time of surgery was 32.7 +/- 10.9 years (range, 20-45). Mean follow-up after last surgery was 8.9 +/- 3.2 months (range, 6-14). The average epithelial healing time was 24.6 +/- 17.3 days (range, 3-45). At the end of the follow-up period, visual acuity improved in all eyes, inflammation subsided, and the subjective complaints decreased remarkably.
Conclusion: AMT with nonpreserved amniotic membrane promoted epithelial healing, reduced surface inflammation, increased patient comfort, and decreased the extent and severity of vascularization when used in patients with acute chemical burns. When used in limbal stem cell deficiency owing to past chemical burns, AMT alone or in combination with LAT aided in ocular surface reconstruction. Infectious, inflammatory, or toxic/allergic reactions were not encountered in any patient owing to the use of nonpreserved amniotic membrane. Further studies are required to establish the safety and efficacy of preserved and nonpreserved AMT in ocular surface reconstruction.