In a study released as an Epub ahead of print by Ophthalmic Research, Cellini et al1 investigated the efficacy of nerve growth factor for healing corneal wounds after cataract surgery.
The authors administered either nerve growth factor or hyaluronic acid eye drops to 30 patients who had just undergone cataract surgery. Patients in both groups used one drop of their respective solutions every 2 hours for 2 weeks and then q.i.d. for another week.
On postoperative day 1, optical coherence tomography (OCT) showed reduced endothelial cell counts and increased temporal corneal edge thickness in both groups, compared with baseline. On postoperative day 7, patients in the nerve growth factor group had higher epithelial cell counts than patients in the hyaluronic acid group (2,511.4 ± 229.8 vs 2.490 ± 230.4). Corneal edge thickness, however, was closer to baseline in the nerve growth factor group (6.34.2 ± 22 vs 639.2 ± 24.7) than in the hyaluronic acid group (7.04.2 ± 11.8 vs 644.4 ± 31.9). By day 21, ocular coherence tomography showed complete wound healing in the eyes treated with nerve growth factor. Based on their clinical observations, the authors concluded that topical nerve growth factor accelerated corneal wound healing after cataract surgery.
Currently there are no approved drugs for use in a ocular postsurgical environment. Most ophthalmic surgeons prescribe antibiotics alone or in combination with corticosteroid to reduce inflammation. This report highlights a new way to treat the significant unment medical need of enhanced corneal wounding healing.
Message posted by: Simon Chandler