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Niger Postgrad Med J. 2015 Oct-Dec;22(4):237-40. doi: 10.4103/1117-1936.173977.

Nucleus drop during small incision cataract surgery: A report of four cases.

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From the Department of Ophthalmology, Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi Araba, Lagos, Nigeria.


Small incision cataract surgery (SICS) offers the benefits of a phacoemulsification (phaco) surgery without the attendant high cost, but it is not without certain risk such as nucleus drop into the vitreous as seen in phaco. A retrospective study of SICS and associated factors leading to nucleus drop during surgery, challenges of management and the visual outcomes. Of 793 eye surgeries performed during the study 586 were SICSs. Nucleus drop during SICS occurred in 0.68% of patients. Can-opener technique of capsulotomy, use of dispersive viscoelastic, diabetes mellitus, lack of anterior vitrectomy machine and poor access to immediate posterior vitrectomy were important problems in the management of the cases of nucleus drop in this study. The visual outcomes were poor in all the cases of nucleus drop. Careful patient selection for SICS and the use of continuous curvilinear capsulorhexis are advocated. An interior vitrectomy machine should be available to all cataract surgeons. It is good professional practice to be acquainted with the available vitreo-retina surgeons for urgent assistance in cases of nucleus drop.

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