Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Mechanical energy from intraocular instruments cause emulsification of silicone oil


Aim: The complications of intraocular silicone oil include emulsification, which may lead to vision-threatening disorders such as keratopathy, secondary glaucoma and retinopathy. The authors study the effect of mechanical energy from surgical instruments on the emulsification of silicone oil.

Methods: Three different handpieces (phacofragmentation, phacoemulsification, high-speed vitrectomy) were placed at the interface of balanced salt solution and silicone oil (1000 and 5000 cst, 200 fluid; Dow Corning). The phacofragmentation handpiece was evaluated over different ultrasound powers and duration. Emulsification was quantified with phase-contrast microscopy and manual counting of digital photographs by a masked examiner. In addition, phacoemulsification was performed in the anterior chamber of a human ex vivo eye with full-fill silicone oil.

Results: Emulsification increases with higher phacofragmentation power and duration and is greater for 1000 cst silicone oil. Emulsification of silicone oil occurs with phacoemulsification and high-speed vitrectomy handpieces.

Conclusions: The energy from surgical handpieces is sufficient to result in silicone oil emulsification.

  • silicone oils
  • phacoemulsification
  • phacofragmentation
  • vitrectomy

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.