Outcomes of surgery for posterior polar cataract

Ken Hayashi, Hideyuki Hayashi, Fuminori Nakao, Fumihiko Hayashi
Journal of Cataract and Refractive Surgery 2003, 29 (1): 45-9

PURPOSE: To report the preferred technique and the outcomes of surgery for posterior polar cataract.

SETTING: Hayashi Eye Hospital, Fukuoka, Japan.

METHODS: Medical records of 28 eyes of 20 consecutive patients with posterior polar cataract who had cataract surgery were reviewed. The surgical techniques used, intraoperative complications, preoperative and postoperative visual acuities, and the causes of impaired visual acuity after surgery were examined.

RESULTS: Of the 28 eyes, 25 (89.3%) with a small to medium posterior polar opacity had standard phacoemulsification or aspiration surgery. Two eyes (7.1%) with a large opacity and soft lens nucleus had pars plana lensectomy, and 1 eye (3.6%) with a large opacity and hard nucleus had intracapsular cataract extraction. Among the eyes having phacoemulsification or aspiration surgery, posterior capsule rupture occurred in 2 (7.1%). The mean visual acuity improved significantly after surgery (P <.0001); however, the postoperative visual acuity was worse than 20/20 in 7 eyes (25.0%). The cause of the low acuity was amblyopia in 4 eyes (14.3%), impaired foveal function after retinal detachment in 2 eyes (7.1%), and macular degeneration in 1 eye (3.6%).

CONCLUSION: Posterior polar cataracts can be safely extracted if the appropriate surgical technique is selected. Visual acuity improved significantly in most cases, although some patients with a unilateral cataract had previously developed amblyopia.

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