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Lens capsule-related complications in femtosecond laser-assisted cataract surgery: a study based on video analysis


Purpose To analyse the occurrence and potential causes of lens capsule-related complications during femtosecond laser-assisted cataract surgery (FLACS).

Methods This prospective consecutive cohort study included the first 1600 eyes (from 1140 consecutive patients) who received FLACS performed by the same surgeon from May 2015 to December 2018. The potential causes and characteristic signs of capsulotomy-related complications, including incomplete capsulotomies and radial anterior capsule (AC) tears, were summarised based on the agreement of two ophthalmologists after they analysed the surgical videos. Subgroup analysis was conducted to characterise the capsulotomy learning curve.

Results Of the 1600 eyes, 52 (3.25%) had incomplete capsulotomies and 22 (1.38%) had radial AC tears. The most common causes of incomplete capsulotomies were eye tilt (16 eyes, 30.77%), air bubbles or ocular secretions at the interface (14 eyes, 26.92%) and white cataracts (7 eyes, 13.46%). Additionally, 54.55% (12/22) of AC tears were due to incomplete capsulotomy and secondary capsulorhexis. A significant difference was noted between the first 200 eyes and subsequent groups in terms of the incidence of incomplete capsulotomies. No difference was observed in the incidence of AC tears after the initial 100 procedures.

Conclusion The most common causes of incomplete capsulotomies were eye tilt and air bubbles or ocular secretions at the interface. Secondary capsulorhexis after incomplete capsulotomy is the main risk factor for AC tears. There was a steep learning curve for laser capsulotomy in the first 100 operated eyes, as evidenced by the higher complication rate, but this stabilised after 200 procedures.

  • lens and zonules
  • treatment lasers
  • treatment surgery

Data availability statement

Data are available upon reasonable request. Not applicable.

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