Purpose: To evaluate the effect of brimonidine 0.2% on intraocular pressure (IOP) after small incision cataract surgery.
Setting: Department of Ophthalmology, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.
Methods: This prospective randomized study comprised 80 eyes of 40 patients scheduled for small incision cataract surgery in both eyes. In each patient, 1 eye was randomly assigned to receive 1 drop of brimonidine 0.2% or no treatment (control) immediately after surgery. The fellow eye received the other assigned treatment. All patients had standardized surgery by the same surgeon with sodium hyaluronate 1%, a temporal 3.5 mm sutureless posterior limbal incision, phacoemulsification, and implantation of a foldable intraocular lens. The IOP was measured preoperatively as well as 6 and 20 to 24 hours and 1 week postoperatively.
Results: Six hours after surgery, the mean increase in IOP was 4.7 mm Hg +/- 6.1 (SD) in the brimonidine group and 4.6 +/- 5.3 mm Hg in the control group. In each group, 17 eyes (43%) had an IOP increase of 5 mm Hg or more. Twenty to 24 hours after surgery, the mean increase in IOP was 1.5 +/- 4.2 mm Hg in the brimonidine group and 1.6 +/- 4.4 mm Hg in the control group. There were no statistically significant between-group differences at any measurement.
Conclusions: In both groups, IOP significantly increased 6 hours and 20 to 24 hours after small incision cataract surgery. Brimonidine 0.2% failed to reduce the IOP increase observed after small incision cataract surgery.