Corneal endothelial cell counts after Molteno implantation

Am J Ophthalmol. 1993 Jan;115(1):93-6. doi: 10.1016/s0002-9394(14)73530-5.


Implantation of a Molteno drainage shunt has been shown to be effective in advanced glaucoma. Foreign substances within the anterior chamber have been known to cause progressive endothelial cell loss. We undertook a study to evaluate the endothelial effects of an indwelling Molteno drainage shunt. Nineteen patients who underwent uneventful implantation of a Molteno drainage shunt for advanced aphakic or pseudophakic glaucoma were followed up. Serial endothelial cell counts were obtained in a masked fashion. During follow-up periods ranging from 5.4 to 25.7 months, endothelial cell loss averaged two cells per square millimeter per postoperative month with a 95% confidence interval of positive seven cells to negative ten cells per square millimeter per postoperative month. No clinically significant progressive trend in endothelial cell loss was seen in patients undergoing uncomplicated Molteno drainage procedures. Larger sample sizes with longer follow-up will be necessary to establish whether a Molteno drainage shunt causes clinically remarkable endothelial cell loss.

MeSH terms

  • Cell Count
  • Drainage / instrumentation*
  • Endothelium, Corneal / pathology*
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Glaucoma / pathology
  • Glaucoma / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Time Factors