Purpose: To characterize patients with Acanthamoeba keratitis and to evaluate the safety and efficacy of propamidine isethionate 0.1% ophthalmic solution (Brolene) when administered concomitantly with neomycin- polymyxin B-gramicidin ophthalmic solution (Neotricin) in the treatment of Acanthamoeba keratitis. Design: Prospective, noncomparative case series. Methods: The authors report the clinical characteristics and outcomes of patients who entered this multi-centered, open-label, clinical trial. Eighty-three patients with Acanthamoeba keratitis representing 87 infected eyes entered the trial. Results: Sixty (69%) of the 87 eyes enrolled had data analyzed for treatment efficacy and safety. Of these 60 eyes, 50 (83%) experienced treatment success. Thirty (60%) patients successfully treated adhered to treatment protocol guidelines. Patients who broke protocol had disease exacerbation during the maintenance therapy phase. The only eyes lost/enucleated were 7 of 17 in which penetrating keratoplasty was performed before eradication of the infectious agent. Conclusion: Propamidine isethionate and neomycin are an effective treatment for Acanthamoeba keratitis. Penetrating keratoplasty should be performed only for visual rehabilitation and not to 'debulk' an active infection. The authors advocate treating patients with topical medications, mainly Brolene, until all organisms are eradicated. There should be no signs of infection for at least 3 months in the patients not receiving antiamebic medications before penetrating keratoplasty is performed.
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