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A Journal on Ophthalmology
Minerva Oftalmologica 2009 March;51(1):15-22
Rama P., Insacco C., Spinelli A.
Dipartimento di Oftalmologia Ospedale San Raffaele, Milano, Italia
The aim of this paper was to examine the present role of keratoplasty and how this role might develop in the future. Cornea transplantation involves the substitution of pathological tissue with a homologous corneal flap. The procedure is carried out using selected donor-supplied corneas taken from eye banks. There are three types of procedure, depending on the portion of the cornea transplanted: perforating keratoplasty (PKP), whereby a total thickness portion of the cornea is substituted; anterior lamellar keratoplasty (ALK/DALK), involving the transplantation of the anterior segment of the cornea; endokeratoplasty (DSAEK/DMEK), which is substitution of the posterior segment of the cornea. Each procedure follows precise indications. This paper examines the results and possible complications. Keratoplasty may, therefore, be carried out using different techniques, each of which has clearly defined characteristics and indications. Results are positive and risks are low. The situation continues improving and further progress is on the horizon with the introduction of new laser technology and the application of stem cells.