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Arch Ophthalmol. 1991 Dec;109(12):1764-8.

Results of extracapsular cataract surgery and intraocular lens implantation in Ghana.

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Department of Ophthalmology, Stanford University Medical Center, CA 94305.


Neither outpatient surgery nor intraocular lenses have been widely used in developing countries. We performed extracapsular cataract extraction with posterior chamber intraocular lens implantation in a simple outpatient clinic in Ghana, West Africa. Forty-nine (64%) of 77 eligible patients with follow-up times of 12 to 29 months after surgery underwent an eye examination and an interview related to activities of daily life. Preoperative visual acuity was counting fingers or worse in all but one patient. Visual acuity improved in 44 patients (90%) after surgery. Twenty-six patients (53%) had a corrected visual acuity of 20/40 or better, 11 (22%) had a corrected visual acuity of 20/50 to 20/100, and 12 (25%) had a corrected visual acuity of 20/200 or worse. Subjectively, 94% of patients believed that their vision improved after surgery. No major late complications occurred following the immediate postoperative period. In addition, our population experienced no complications attributable to the outpatient format of this surgery. Every patient, all of whom lived within a 32-km radius of the clinic, reliably returned for postoperative appointments. Our results demonstrate that outpatient surgery may be a safe and practical alternative to routine hospitalization for eye surgery in developing countries.

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