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      Safety and efficacy of epithelium removal and transepithelial corneal collagen crosslinking for keratoconus.

      1 , 2 , 3

      Eye (London, England)

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          This review aims to assess the efficacy and safety of epithelial removal (ER) and transepithelial (TE) corneal collagen crosslinking (CXL) for the treatment of keratoconus. We used MEDLINE to identify all ER and TE CXL studies on keratoconic eyes (n≥20, follow-up ≥12 months). Ex vivo and studies for non-keratoconus indications or in conjunction with other procedures were excluded. Data on uncorrected (UDVA) and corrected (CDVA) distance visual acuity, refractive cylinder, maximum keratometry (Kmax), and adverse events were collected at the latest follow-up and 1 year. Only one randomised controlled trial (RCT) qualified inclusion. Forty-four ER and five TE studies were included. For logMAR UDVA, CDVA, mean spherical equivalent, refractive cylinder and Kmax, at latest follow-up 81, 85, 93, 62, and 93% ER studies vs 66.7, 80, 75, 33, and 40% TE studies reported improvement, respectively. Whereas at 1 year, 90, 59, and 91% ER studies vs 80, 50, and 25% TE studies reported improvement, respectively. The majority of studies showed reduced pachymetry in both groups. Treatment failure, retreatment rates, and conversion to transplantation were reported to be up to 33, 8.6, and 6.25%, respectively, in ER studies only. Stromal oedema, haze, keratitis, and scarring were only reported in ER studies, whereas endothelial cell counts remained variable in both groups. Both ER and TE studies showed improvement in visual acuity, refractive cylinder but Kmax worsened in most TE studies. Adverse events were reported more with ER studies. This review calls for more high quality ER and TE studies with comparable parameters for further assessment of safety and efficacy.

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          Author and article information

          Eye (Lond)
          Eye (London, England)
          Jan 2015
          : 29
          : 1
          [1 ] Department of Ophthalmology, Queen Mary's Hospital, King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK.
          [2 ] Cochrane Eyes and Vision Group, Department of Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, USA.
          [3 ] Sussex Eye Hospital, Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust, Brighton, UK.


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