Purpose: To evaluate the influence of primary posterior continuous curvilinear capsulorhexis (PCCC) on capsule opacification development and capsular bag changes within the first year after cataract surgery with 2 intraocular lenses (IOLs) of comparable design but different material.
Setting: Department of Ophthalmology, University of Vienna, Medical School, Vienna, Austria.
Methods: Thirty-seven patients with age-related cataract had bilateral small incision cataract surgery with a PCCC performed after capsular tension ring insertion. One eye was randomly assigned to receive a hydrogel IOL and the other eye, a silicone IOL. Standardized digital retroillumination photographs were taken 1 day, 1 week, and 1, 3, 6, and 12 months after surgery to evaluate changes in the dimensions of the anterior and posterior capsulorhexis opening area and the presence of anterior and posterior capsule opacification.
Results: The area of the anterior continuous curvilinear capsulorhexis (ACCC) opening was significantly reduced during the first 6 postoperative months. The shrinkage was more pronounced (-25%) in the silicone IOL group than in the hydrogel IOL group. Ten percent of eyes with a silicone IOL had marked shrinkage of the ACCC. The area of the PCCC did not change in eyes with a hydrogel IOL but was larger (+20%) in eyes with a silicone IOL. Anterior ongrowth was observed in 60% in the hydrogel group and in no eye in the silicone group. Anterior capsule fibrosis was observed in 90% in the silicone group and in 20% in the hydrogel group. Total closure of the PCCC was not observed within the first year, but posterior ongrowth was observed in 40% in the hydrogel group and 10% in the silicone group.
Conclusions: Anterior capsulorhexis shrinkage with concomitant posterior capsulorhexis enlargement was observed in eyes with a silicone IOL. The hydrogel IOL induced more ongrowth on the anterior and posterior IOL surfaces, whereas the silicone IOL induced more anterior capsule fibrosis. Total closure of the PCCC was not observed within the first year after surgery.