Programm                 "Degeneration und Regeneration– Grundlagen, Diagnostik und Therapie"

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Relapse Rate of Corneal Erosion after Excimer-Laser Therapy (PTK)

Genée D., Quentin C.-D.
Dept. of Ophthalmology, Goettingen University

Purpose: Conventional therapy of recurrent corneal erosion with ointment or eyedrops shows rather unsatisfying results. Patients are mostly depending on periodical drop application, even in the symptom-free interval. Invasive therapies like surgical removal of epithelium or puncture with a fine needle show a high rate of relapse, too. Phototherapeutic Keratektomie with the excimer laser is a new method with only a few long time observations described in the literature.
Method: In our restrospective study we examined the relapse rate in therapy of the recurrent corneal erosion after PTK with the excimer laser(193 nM). In the years 1994 until 2003 we treated 115 eyes, which had a recurrent corneal erosion from 2 weeks to 15 years before. The follow-up period ranged from 2 to 110 months (mean: 48). In this time we examined 104 patients (f=56, m=48) aged between 24 and 91 years (mean: 46).
Results: 89 (85.5%) eyes had no erosion during the follow-up time. 15 (14.4%) eyes had a relapse of corneal erosion. Ten of them had a second treatment with the excimer laser, after which 5 eyes had no further erosion until now (22 months). So the total relapse rate decreased to 9.6%. There was no difference between eyes with surgical pretreatment or eyes only treated with eyedrops and ointment.
Conclusions: The relapse rate of 9.6 % is nearly equal to those of other reports. In our opinion the PTK could become the prior

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