Patients with Fuchs’ endothelial corneal dystrophy are needed to participate in a study being led by Associate Professor Elaine Chong at Centre for Eye Research Australia.
A/Prof Chong’s study aims to find out more about Descemet’s stripping only / Descemetorhexis without endothelial keratoplasty (DWEK) – a new treatment for Fuchs’ dystrophy which does not involve corneal transplant. The procedure, which was discovered by accident, has been shown to successfully improve visual acuity in the early to intermediate stage of the disease.
A/Prof Chong hopes the study will provide answers to why some patients won’t respond to the procedure, how different surgical techniques used can impact outcomes, and the potential frequency and duration for treatment with Rock inhibitors.
“Our study has been extended and is still actively recruiting. So far, 80% (of patients who have had the DWEK procedure) were successful and 20% went on to require transplant,” she said
A/Prof Chong asked optometrists to refer appropriate patients to participate in the study. “Suitable patients are those who want to improve their vision, and are happy to accept DMEK transplant if the more experimental DWEK fails,” she said.
If you have interested patients, you can contact A/Prof Chong via email: elaine@ irissurgery.com.au or email@example.com.
To read more about DWEK, turn to page 51 of this issue.