The effects of melatonin on anxiety and pain scores of patients, intraocular pressure, and operating conditions during cataract surgery under topical anesthesia

Indian J Ophthalmol. 2013 Jul;61(7):319-24. doi: 10.4103/0301-4738.99637.


Aims: To evaluate the effects of melatonin premedication on anxiety and pain scores of patients, operating conditions, and intraocular pressure during cataract surgery under topical anesthesia.

Materials and methods: Sixty patients were randomly assigned to receive either sublingual melatonin 3 mg or placebo 60 min before surgery. Verbal anxiety scores and verbal pain scores, heart rate, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, intraocular pressure, and quality of operating conditions were recorded.

Results: Melatonin significantly reduced the anxiety scores (median, interquartile range) from 5 and 5-3 to 3 and 2-4 after premedication and to 3 and 2-3 during surgery and to 0 and 0-1 postoperatively before discharge from the recovery room. There were significant differences between two groups in anxiety scores after premedication (95% CI 3-3.5; P = 0.023), intraoperatively (95% CI 2.5-3.5; P = 0.007), and postoperatively (95% CI 0.5-1; P = 0.007). The surgeon reported better quality of operating conditions in the melatonin group (P = 0.001). No significant difference in intraoperative and postoperative pain scores, intraocular pressure, heart rate, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure between two groups was recorded.

Conclusion: Sublingual melatonin premedication for patients undergoing cataract surgery under topical anesthesia reduced the anxiety scores in patients and provided excellent operating conditions.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Sublingual
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Anesthesia, Local / methods*
  • Anxiety / complications
  • Anxiety / diagnosis
  • Anxiety / drug therapy*
  • Central Nervous System Depressants / administration & dosage
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Intraocular Pressure / physiology*
  • Intraoperative Period
  • Male
  • Melatonin / administration & dosage*
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain / complications
  • Pain / diagnosis*
  • Pain / drug therapy
  • Pain Measurement*
  • Phacoemulsification / methods*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Central Nervous System Depressants
  • Melatonin