Palliative Efficacy of Intrastromal Amniotic Membrane Procedure in Symptomatic Bullous Keratopathy Patients

Turk J Ophthalmol. 2022 Jun 29;52(3):162-167. doi: 10.4274/tjo.galenos.2022.38839.


Objectives: To evaluate the palliative efficacy of the intrastromal human amniotic membrane (hAM) surgery technique in patients with symptomatic bullous keratopathy and limited visual potential.

Materials and methods: The study was carried out retrospectively by reviewing the medical data of 10 patients with poor visual prognosis who underwent intrastromal hAM surgery due to bullous keratopathy-related severe pain. Visual acuity, surgical indication, epithelization time, preoperative and postoperative pain scores, as well as anterior segment optical coherence tomography images and anterior segment photographs were obtained from the medical records.

Results: Ten patients (6 females/4 males) were included in the study. Nine patients underwent surgery for pseudophakic bullous keratopathy and glaucoma, and 1 patient due to graft failure and glaucoma. The mean time for corneal epithelization was 27.10±13.05 days (range, 10-50), while the mean follow-up time was 37.5±1.6 months (range, 36-39.2). Subjective pain score improved in all patients after surgery. Suture-induced keratitis occurred during follow-up in one patient and was controlled with medical treatment.

Conclusion: Intrastromal amniotic membrane surgery may be an alternative to keratoplasty for pain palliation in patients with limited visual prognosis after corneal transplantation when donor tissue is scarce. With this method, hAM remains on the ocular surface longer, and superficial stromal excision is believed to provide a more regular ocular surface and extend the asymptomatic period.

Keywords: Amniotic membrane inlay technique; bullous keratopathy; poor visual prognosis.

MeSH terms

  • Amnion / transplantation
  • Blister / surgery
  • Corneal Diseases* / diagnosis
  • Corneal Diseases* / surgery
  • Female
  • Glaucoma*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pain
  • Retrospective Studies