ACCELERATED EPITHELIAL WOUND HEALING FOLLOWING PHOTOREFRACTIVE KERATECTOMY IN RABBITS
K. Vogelberg, M. Böhnke
Background: An acceleration of corneal epithelial wound healing after photorefractive keratectomy (PRK) appears to be desirable for various reasons. Aim of the study: We studied the effect of Actihaemyl®, a drug used for the stimulation of healing and regenerative processes, on the corneal epithelial wound healing following PRK in experimental animals.
Materials and methods: A total of 48 rabbits received a unilateral PRK of - 5D /6mm diameter. All rabbits received topical antibiotics. Group 1 was given topical the commercially available drug Actihaemyl® containing Benzalkoniumchloride. Group 2 was treated with placebo, and group 3 received topical ActihaemylS without preservative. The animals were followed daily for up to four weeks.
Results: Epithelial wound healing was best in group 3 considering wound closure time, size of the epithelial defect and clarity of the corneal reflex. A mild reticular haze was observed in group 3, whilst epithelial problems in the other groups had an adverse effect on stromal visibility. When corneas with recurrent erosions were excluded from the database, the highest haze grades were found in group 2. The signs of conjunctival irritation were lowest in group 3.
Discussion: This study shows an acceleration of epithelial wound healing following PRK in rabbits by the topical administartion of the drug Actihaemyl®. The influence on corneal scar formation was less well pronounced.
Dept. of Ophthalmology, University of Bern, CH-3010 Bern