Hanging by a thread: the long-term efficacy and safety of transscleral sutured intraocular lenses in children (an American Ophthalmological Society thesis).
PURPOSE: To evaluate the long-term efficacy, safety, and advisability of using transscleral sutured posterior chamber intraocular lenses (IOLs) in pediatric patients with no capsular support and to determine whether 10-0 polypropylene suture should be used for this purpose. METHODS: A long-term retrospective interventional case series review of 33 eyes of 26 patients who had a sutured IOL at Duke University Eye Center were evaluated for the intraoperative surgical risks, postoperative visual and refractive outcomes, and the number, type, and severity of the postoperative complications. In addition, a survey of pediatric ophthalmologists' experience with suture breakage was performed. RESULTS: Postoperative visual acuity was significantly improved after surgery (P < .001). Predicted vs actual refraction was not significantly different (P = .10) and was within 1.50 diopters of predicted in 66% of patients. A refractive myopic shift occurred over time and was age-dependent. Intraoperative and immediate postoperative complications were minimal and not sight-threatening. Three patients developed subluxation of the IOL secondary to spontaneous 10-0 polypropylene suture breakage at 3.5, 8, and 9 years after surgery. A survey of pediatric ophthalmologists revealed 10 similar cases (mean, 5 years after surgery). CONCLUSION: Transscleral fixation of an IOL in a child appears to be a safe and effective procedure provided that the suture material used is stable enough to resist significant degradation over time. Caution should be exercised in the use of 10-0 polypropylene suture to fixate an IOL to the sclera in children, and an alternative material or size should be considered.
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