Tectonic Keratoplasty in Patients with Non-traumatic, Non-infectious Corneal Perforations

The Open Ophthalmology Journal 18 December 2020 RESEARCH ARTICLE DOI: 10.2174/1874364102014010075



The study aims to report clinical results of tectonic keratoplasty for non-traumatic, non-infectious corneal perforations.

Materials and Methods:

The medical records of 12 patients who underwent tectonic penetrating keratoplasty between October 2014 and August 2018 at Ege University Ophthalmology Department were retrospectively reviewed.


The mean age of the patients was 52.92±30.34 (range, 2-82) years. The causes of corneal perforation were dry eye (neurotrophic keratopathy (n=4), limbal stem cell deficiency (n=2), exposure keratopathy (n=2) and graft versus host disease (n=1)) in 9 patients. In the remaining 3 patients, the etiology of perforation was not determined. The mean Visual Acuity (VA) was 2.98±0.39 (range, 1.8-3.1) LogMAR before the surgery. Despite conservative treatment, tectonic penetrating keratoplasty had to be performed in all patients in order to manage the perforation. Mean time in between initial examination and surgery was 10.75±12.04 (1-41) days. In 2 patients, allogenic limbal stem cell transplantation; in one patient, lateral tarsorrhaphy and in one patient symblepharon release with amniotic membrane transplantation were performed additional to tectonic keratoplasty. Mean follow-up time was 57.88±55.47 (4-141) weeks. Grafts were clear in 6 eyes and opaque in 5 eyes. The main causes of graft failure among opaque grafts were ocular surface disease (3), allograft rejection (1) and glaucoma-related endothelial failure (1). Phthisis bulbi was detected in one patient with congenital glaucoma due to vitreous loss at the time of perforation. The mean final VA in patients who had clear grafts was 1.83±1.03 (range, 0.8-3.1) LogMAR.


To prevent serious complications in non-traumatic, non-infectious corneal perforations, providing anatomic integrity immediately is a must. If conservative treatment is inadequate or the perforation area is extensive, tectonic penetrating keratoplasty is indicated. Besides, it is important to manage the etiological risk factors in order to obtain successful clinical follow up.

Keywords: Tectonic keratoplasty, Corneal perforation, Graft failure, Visual acuity, Amniotic membrane transplantation, Exposure keratopathy.
Fulltext HTML PDF