Primary Graft Failure, Infection, and Endothelial Cell Density in Corneal Transplants With Increased Death-to-Preservation Time

Cornea. 2021 Nov 1;40(11):1462-1465. doi: 10.1097/ICO.0000000000002697.


Purpose: To ascertain whether death-to-preservation time (DPT) is associated with donor endothelial cell density (ECD), primary graft failure (PGF), and infection.

Methods: Donor corneas aged older than 10 years with ECD 2000 to 4500 cells/mm2 were procured between 2011 and 2018 by a single eye bank. Donor corneas were analyzed retrospectively for the main outcome measures of PGF, infection, and ECD. Means and proportions of study parameters were compared between corneas with long and short DPT, defined as greater or less than 14 hours, respectively, excluding corneas with a history of intraocular surgery or diabetes. Multivariate analyses were performed using logistic regression, adjusting for donor age at time of death, history of diabetes mellitus, and history of cataract surgery.

Results: Among 12,015 corneas, those with long DPT had a statistically but not clinically significant higher ECD than that of corneas with short DPT (2754 vs. 2724 cells/mm2, P < 0.01). There was no difference in PGF and infections in corneas with long versus short DPT (0.28% vs. 0.26%, P = 0.86; 0.43% vs. 0.29%, P = 0.51, respectively).

Conclusions: Longer DPT is not associated with a clinically meaningful reduction in donor ECD, PGF, or infection.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Cell Count
  • Corneal Diseases / surgery*
  • Endothelium, Corneal / cytology*
  • Eye Banks
  • Eye Infections, Bacterial / epidemiology*
  • Eye Infections, Bacterial / etiology
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Graft Rejection / epidemiology*
  • Graft Rejection / etiology
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Organ Preservation / methods*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Surgical Wound Infection / epidemiology*
  • Surgical Wound Infection / etiology
  • Time-to-Treatment*
  • Tissue Donors
  • United States / epidemiology