Clinical Outcomes of Descemet Stripping Endothelial Keratoplasty in Eyes With Glaucoma Drainage Devices

Joann J. Kang, David C. Ritterband, Richard T. Atallah, Jeffrey M. Liebmann, John A. Seedor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


Precis:In this retrospective case series of 85 eyes, 31.8% developed graft failure and graft survival was 50% at 3 years. The presence of an aqueous shunt has a significantly adverse effect on long-term graft survival.Purpose:To report visual outcomes and complications of Descemet stripping endothelial keratoplasty (DSEK) in eyes with glaucoma drainage devices (GDD).Materials and Methods:A retrospective chart review was conducted of 122 procedures of 85 eyes of 83 patients who underwent DSEK and had prior or concurrent GDD implantation. Mean follow-up was 36.5±31.4 months. Patients with postoperative follow-up of <3 months were excluded from analysis. Outcome measures examined included visual acuity, donor dislocation rate, intraocular pressure (IOP), and graft survival.Results:The mean logMAR vision improved to 1.07 postoperatively from 1.43 preoperatively, with 61% of eyes experiencing improved visual acuity. Graft dislocation occurred in 27 (31.8%) eyes and required repeat injection of air in the anterior chamber. Primary graft failure occurred in 2 (2.4%) eyes, whereas secondary graft failure occurred in 27 (31.8%) of eyes, with an average time of 24.3 months for development. Estimated survival rates at 1, 2, and 3 years were 89%, 78%, and 50%, respectively. Escalation of IOP occurred in 21 (24.7%) eyes postoperatively, where 14 eyes underwent medical therapy and 7 eyes required surgical intervention/laser for IOP control.Conclusions:DSEK after GDD is a viable alternative to treat endothelial dysfunction, with the majority of patients achieving visual improvement. However, aqueous shunt implantation has a significantly adverse effect on long-term graft survival and close follow-up is warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)601-605
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of glaucoma
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2019



  • DSEK
  • glaucoma
  • graft dislocation
  • graft failure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology

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