Background: The risk of glaucoma among aphakic children is as high as 32%, based primarily on intraocular pressure (IOP) measurements. Although IOP may be falsely elevated by increased central corneal thickness, central corneal thickness (CCT) values have not been reported in this population.
Methods: Patients from the practices of 2 pediatric ophthalmologists and 2 glaucoma specialists had measurements of CCT, IOP, and optic nerve cupping, with visual field analysis when possible. Normal fellow eyes of unilateral aphakes and pseudophakes were included as controls.
Results: In 36 aphakic and 6 pseudophakic eyes CCT averaged 660 microns compared with 576 microns for phakic fellow eyes (P < 0.0001). Glaucoma, defined by IOP at least 35 mm Hg or by IOP at least 22 mm Hg associated with optic nerve changes, occurred in 21% of 28 aphakic patients but in no pseudophakic patient.
Conclusions: CCT in aphakic/pseudophakic children is substantially increased compared with control patients. These values may be important in interpreting IOP measurements in these children.