Double-masked, sham and placebo-controlled trial of corneal cross-linking and topical difluprednate in the treatment of bacterial keratitis: Steroids and Cross-linking for Ulcer Treatment Trial (SCUT II) study protocol

Naveen Radhakrishnan, Venkatesh N. Prajna, Lalitha S. Prajna, Anitha Venugopal, Shivanandha Narayana, Revathi Rajaraman, Guillermo Amescua, Travis C. Porco, Thomas M. Lietman, Jennifer Rose-Nussbaumer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Introduction Although antibiotics are successful at achieving microbiological cure in infectious keratitis, outcomes are often poor due to corneal scarring. Ideal treatment of corneal ulcers would address both the infection and the inflammation. Adjunctive topical steroid treatment may improve outcomes by reducing inflammation. Corneal cross-linking (CXL) is a novel prospective therapy that may simultaneously reduce both inflammatory cells and bacterial pathogens. The purpose of this study is to determine differences in 6-month visual acuity between standard medical therapy with antibiotics versus antibiotics with adjunctive early topical steroid therapy versus antibiotic treatment plus CXL and early topical steroids. Methods and analysis This international, randomised, sham and placebo-controlled, three-arm clinical trial randomises patients with smear positive bacterial ulcers in a 1:1:1 fashion to one of three treatment arms: (1) topical 0.5% moxifloxacin plus topical placebo plus sham CXL; (2) topical 0.5% moxifloxacin plus difluprednate 0.05% plus sham CXL; or (3) the CXL group: topical 0.5% moxifloxacin plus difluprednate 0.05% plus CXL. Ethics and dissemination We anticipate that both adjunctive topical steroids and CXL will improved best spectacle corrected visual acuity and also reduce complications such as corneal perforation and the need for therapeutic penetrating keratoplasty. This study will comply with the NIH Data Sharing Policy and Policy on the Dissemination of NIH-Funded Clinical Trial Information and the Clinical Trials Registration and Results Information Submission rule. Our results will be disseminated via ClinicalTrials.gov website, meetings and journal publications. Our data will also be available on reasonable request. Trial registration number NCT04097730.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere000811
JournalBMJ Open Ophthalmology
Volume6
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 29 2021

Keywords

  • clinical trial
  • cornea
  • infection
  • inflammation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology

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