Wavefront analysis of higher-order aberrations in patients with cataract

J Cataract Refract Surg. 2002 Mar;28(3):438-44. doi: 10.1016/s0886-3350(01)01176-2.


Purpose: To determine local refractive changes and higher-order aberrations in patients with nuclear or cortical cataract.

Setting: Osaka University Medical School, Osaka, Japan.

Methods: Wavefront analysis of both ocular and corneal aberrations was performed with the Hartmann-Shack aberrometer in 2 patients, a 22-year-old woman with bilateral developmental nuclear cataract and a 68-year-old woman with mild bilateral cortical cataract.

Results: Case 1 showed a delay in the wavefront that caused a myopic shift in the central pupillary area in both eyes, associated with the nuclear cataract. The spherical-like aberration (right eye, 36%; left eye, 21%) was greater than the coma-like aberration in both eyes. Case 2 showed an advancement of the wavefront that caused a hyperopic shift, especially in the lower temporal pupillary area, that was associated with the cortical cataract. The coma-like aberration (right eye, 63%; left eye, 52%) was greater than the spherical-like aberration in both eyes. The polarity of the third-order spherical aberration was negative in Case 1 and positive in Case 2. Corneal higher-order aberrations were small and had a different distribution than ocular higher-order aberrations in both patients.

Conclusions: The Hartmann-Shack aberrometer was useful in detecting local refractive changes and higher-order aberrations in patients with mild cataract. The polarity and the absolute value of ocular higher-order aberrations may be useful parameters to characterize eyes with cataract.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cataract / complications
  • Cataract / diagnosis*
  • Diagnostic Techniques, Ophthalmological*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hyperopia / diagnosis*
  • Hyperopia / etiology
  • Lens Cortex, Crystalline / pathology*
  • Lens Nucleus, Crystalline / pathology*
  • Myopia / diagnosis*
  • Myopia / etiology