Effect of hinge position on corneal sensation and dry eye parameters after femtosecond laser-assisted LASIK

Jerry Chien-Chieh Huang, Chi-Chin Sun, Chao-Kay Chang, David Hui-Kang Ma, Yi-Fang Lin
Journal of Refractive Surgery 2012, 28 (9): 625-31

PURPOSE: To evaluate the effect of superior- versus nasal-hinged flaps on corneal sensation and dry eye after femtosecond laser-assisted LASIK.

METHODS: A total of 43 patients who had undergone bilateral femtosecond laser-assisted LASIK for myopia were evaluated in a prospective, nonrandomized, contralateral eye study to compare the difference between different hinges on corneal sensation and dry eye. Corneal esthesiometry, Schirmer basic tear secretion test (BST), tear break-up time (BUT), ocular surface stainings, and the Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI) questionnaire were used to evaluate corneal sensation and dry eye parameters preoperatively as well as at 1 week and 1, 3, and 6 months postoperatively.

RESULTS: Corneal sensation decreased significantly in both groups 1 week after surgery (P<.05 in the nasal hinge group; P<.01 in the superior hinge group) and gradually recovered over the first 3 months. No significant change was noted in BUT after surgery in either group (P>.05). Significant increases were noted in BST values at 1 and 3 months (P<.05) and 6 months (P<.01) postoperatively in both groups. Corneal fluorescein staining increased significantly in both groups at 1 week (P<.01) and returned to baseline by 6 months. Conjunctival Rose Bengal staining decreased significantly by 6 months in the superior hinge group only (P<.05). The OSDI significantly increased 1 week after surgery (P<.01) and did not completely return to baseline by 6 months postoperatively in either group (P<.05). No significant differences were noted in any of the parameters between groups at any time point (P>.05).

CONCLUSIONS: Hinge position had no significant effect on corneal sensation or dry eye parameters. Aggressive dry eye regimens are needed for patients with preoperative dry eye.

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