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J Cataract Refract Surg. 2000 Aug;26(8):1190-7.

Retinal breaks before and after neodymium:YAG posterior capsulotomy.

Author information

  • 1Department of Ophthalmology, Helsinki University Central Hospital, Helsinki, Finland. pranta@dlc.fi

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To determine the frequency of asymptomatic retinal breaks before and after neodymium:YAG (Nd:YAG) laser posterior capsulotomy.

SETTING:

Department of Ophthalmology, Helsinki University Central Hospital, Helsinki, Finland.

METHODS:

Of 350 consecutive patients referred for their first laser Nd:YAG posterior capsulotomy, 235 eligible eyes were enrolled and 220 eyes completed the study. A vitreoretinal surgeon looked for retinal breaks using binocular indirect ophthalmoscopy with scleral indentation. The eyes were examined 1 week before and 1 hour and 1 month after the posterior capsulotomy. The number, type, and location of retinal breaks were recorded.

RESULTS:

The median age of eligible patients who did not participate in the study was higher than that of enrolled patients (79.6 versus 74.4 years; P =.0005). The mean axial length, median time from cataract surgery, and the course of cataract surgery were comparable in both groups. Before the posterior capsulotomy, an untreated retinal break was diagnosed in 4 of the 235 eyes (1.7%; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0 to 4) scheduled for surgery and an undiagnosed retinal detachment was present in 2 additional eyes (0.9%; 95% CI 0 to 3). An asymptomatic retinal break was also present in 4 fellow eyes (1.7%, 95% CI 0 to 4). No new breaks developed during Nd:YAG posterior capsulotomy using a median total energy of 51 mJ (range 10 to 901 mJ) and a median number of 22 applications (range 4 to 341 applications) and resulting in an opening with a median largest diameter of 3.4 mm (range 2.0 to 4.6 mm). In 1 treated eye (0.4%; 95% CI 0 to 2), a new retinal break had developed by 1 month postoperatively.

CONCLUSIONS:

The observed 2.1% frequency of asymptomatic retinal breaks that had escaped the attention of the referring ophthalmologist or had developed by 1 month after Nd:YAG posterior capsulotomy can be contrasted with the 0.5% to 2.0% frequency of retinal detachment reported in the literature. However, it is not known which proportion of such asymptomatic breaks, if any, will progress to detachment after Nd:YAG laser posterior capsulotomy.

PMID:
11008047
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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