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July 1960

Effect of Alpha-Chymotrypsin on Corneal Wound Healing

Author Affiliations

Brooklyn, N.Y.
From the Department of Surgery, Division of Ophthalmology, State University of New York, Downstate Medical Center.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1960;64(1):104-107. doi:10.1001/archopht.1960.01840010106009

The use of α-chymotrypsin to facilitate intracapsular cataract extraction has aroused widespread interest in the possibilities for enzymatic zonulolysis. Barraquer's1,2 initial reports have been very encouraging and seem to justify the use of this proteolytic enzyme. The effect of this drug appears to be selective for lysing the zonular fibers of the crystalline lens. A recent editorial,3 however, reported three cases of delayed wound closure following the use of α-chymotrypsin. The wide acceptance of this enzyme suggested a need to clarify this possible disadvantage. It seemed desirable, therefore, to undertake such a study.

Method  Cats ranging from 3.0 to 4.5 kg. in weight were used as the experimental animals. The surgical procedure for the control and experimental groups was identical.The nictitating membrane of the eye to be operated was grasped with a toothed forceps and a traction suture placed through it. The maneuver permitted more adequate exposure

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