Purpose: To quantify changes in endothelial cell counts and corneal thickness measurements in patients having standard phacoemulsification compared with femtosecond laser-assisted cataract removal.
Setting: Ruhr University Eye Clinic, Bochum, Germany.
Design: Prospective randomized intraindividual cohort study.
Methods: One eye of each patient had standard phacoemulsification (control group) and the other eye had femtosecond laser-assisted phacoemulsification (study group), both with intraocular lens implantation. Pulsed ultrasound energy was used for phacoemulsification. Noncontact endothelial cell microscopy and corneal pachymetry were performed preoperatively and 1 day, 3 to 4 days, 7 to 10 days, 50 to 60 days, and 90 to 100 days postoperatively.
Results: The mean endothelial cell loss was 7.9% ± 7.8% (SD) 1 week postoperatively and 8.1% ± 8.1% 3 months postoperatively in the study group and 12.1% ± 7.3% and 13.7% ± 8.4%, respectively, in the control group. The mean relative change in corneal thickness from the preoperative values was -0.0% ± 1.9% at 1 day, 2.8% ± 1.8% at 1 week, and 3.3% ± 1.7% at 3 months in the study group and -0.9% ± 2.3%, 2.4% ± 1.5%, and 3.2% ± 1.4%, respectively, in the control group.
Conclusion: The femtosecond laser did not add to the endothelial damage caused by cataract surgery and might be beneficial in eyes with low preoperative endothelial cell values (eg, cornea guttata cases).
Copyright © 2013 ASCRS and ESCRS. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.