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Augenheilkunde 1. November 2008

Foveal thickness after cataract surgery – Measurement by optical coherence tomography

BACKGROUND: To examine macular thickness changes after uncomplicated cataract surgery in healthy patients and patients with diabetes mellitus and/or arterial hypertension without ocular manifestation.

SETTING: Department of Ophthalmology, Rudolf Foundation Clinic, Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Retinology and Biomicroscopic Lasersurgery, Vienna, Austria.

METHODS: Prospective study with uneventful cataract surgery. Patients were subdevided into two groups. In group one, we included 10 patients without any general internal disease, in group two 15 patients with diabetes and/or arterial hypertension without ocular pathologies. Patients were examined preoperatively, one day, 1, 4 and 12 weeks postoperatively. At each visit a complete ophthalmic evaluation, best corrected Snellen visual acuity and optical coherence tomography of the macula were performed.

RESULTS: Twenty-five eyes of 25 patients were recruited. The mean age was 70 ± 10 years. The average preoperative foveal thickness in both groups was 164 µm ± 12. The foveal thickness four weeks after surgery was 167 ± 14 (p = 0.64) in group 1 and 173 µm ± 14 (p = 0.08) in group 2. One eye in each group had decreased visual results 1 week postoperatively with subclinical thickening of the central macula in OCT measurement.

CONCLUSION: We found no significant increase of foveal thickness after uneventful cataract surgery in both groups and there was no significant difference between these groups. However the percentage of eyes with foveal thickening was higher in group 2 than in group 1 (60% to 20% after 4 weeks and 47% to 30% 12 weeks after surgery).

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