Purpose: To describe the technique and outcome of pars plana vitreous aspiration during penetrating keratoplasty (PK) combined with cataract extraction (CE) and intraocular lens (IOL) implantation (triple procedure) to prevent positive vitreous pressure and its associated complications. Design: Nonrandomized prospective noncomparative interventional case series. Participants: Sixty-five patients who underwent triple procedures between June 2001 and September 2003. Methods: Triple procedures performed on all 65 patients consisted of PK, extracapsular CE, and IOL implantation with standard techniques. After nonpenetrating trephination, anterior vitreous tapping was performed with a 23-gauge needle on a 5-ml syringe over the pars plana 3.5 mm posterior to the limbus in the superotemporal quadrant. Main Outcome Measures: Preoperative best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA), volume of aspirated liquefied vitreous, intraoperative and postoperative complications, and postoperative BCVA at 3 and 6 months. Results: Corneal scarring with cataract was the most common indication for surgery. Preoperative BCVA ranged from 20/160 to light perception. Aspirated vitreous volume varied from 0.3 to 1.5 ml, averaging 1.0 ml. No case had evidence of positive vitreous pressure during surgery. The mean follow-up period was 9.6±2.6 months (range, 6-24). Postoperative complications consisted of graft rejection in 4 cases (6.2%), primary graft failure in 3 (4.6%), and secondary glaucoma in 1 (1.5%). Of the patients, 70.8% had a postoperative BCVA of ≥20/160 at 6 months. Vitreous hemorrhage, retinal tearing, and detachment were not observed. Conclusions: Pars plana anterior vitreous tapping is a safe adjunct for triple procedures to prevent positive vitreous pressure and its associated complications.
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