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2001 Ocular Microbiology and Immunology Group, Abstract 7

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Keratoplasty for the Treatment of Acanthamoeba keratitis
D. Freitas, L. Alvarenga, E. Sato, C.A. Omi, A. Foronda, L. Sousa, L. Viera, M. C. Ye, M.C. Martins, A.L. Hoffling-Lima and R. Belfort Jr.
Ophthalmology Department, Federal University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

Purpose: To evaluate keratoplasty in the treatment of Acanthamoeba keratitis. Time course of disease and treatment were compared to laboratory findings of excised corneas.

Methods: Twenty-six patients with laboratory proven Acanthamoeba keratitis were prospectively followed. Patients were treated with intensive topical biguanide and propamidine for a prolonged period. Eleven patients failed to respond to medical therapy. It was necessary for them to undergo therapeutic keratoplasty to control the disease. Excised corneas were cultured and analyzed by histopathology for Acanthamoeba..

Results: Cultures were positive in six excised corneas and histopathological analysis revealed microorganisms in ten. Two patients had disease recurrence in the graft. Four evolved with graft rejection.

Conclusions: Penetrating keratoplasty seem to be a good treatment option for Acanthamoeba keratitis.

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