Purpose: To investigate the cytotoxicity of triamcinolone acetonide (TA) suspensions to corneal endothelial cells (CECs).
Setting: Department of Ophthalmology, Institute of Clinical Medicine, College of Medicine, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan.
Methods: New Zealand white rabbit CECs were exposed for 1 minute to balanced salt solution (BSS); commercial TA suspension (cTA); vehicle-removed TA (-vTA); pure vehicle (V); 1/10 dilutions of cTA, -vTA, or V in BSS; or benzyl alcohol (BA) (cTA preservative) 9 mg/mL. Corneal endothelial cell toxicity was assessed by light microscopy (trypan blue staining) and transmission electron microscopy. The effects of 3-, 10-, or 30-minute exposures to 1/10 cTA, 1/10 -vTA, or V were also investigated.
Results: One-minute exposures to -vTA or 1/10 -vTA did not damage CECs; however, cTA, V, or 1/10 dilutions of cTA or V caused damage and cells exposed to BA showed severe ultrastructural damage/lysis. A 30-minute exposure to 1/10 -vTA did not cause significant cell damage, whereas 3- to 30-minute exposures to 1/10 cTA or V showed significant time-dependent cytotoxicity.
Conclusions: Commercial TA suspension was cytotoxic to cultured rabbit CECs because of the preservative, BA, in the vehicle. Because 1/10 -vTA appeared to be safe for up to 30 minutes of exposure, use of 1/10 dilutions of vehicle-removed TA is suggested to help surgeons visualize prolapsed vitreous during anterior vitrectomy in complicated cataract surgeries.