Complications after surgery for congenital and infantile cataracts

Am J Ophthalmol. 1989 Aug 15;108(2):136-41. doi: 10.1016/0002-9394(89)90007-x.


We reviewed the records of 78 patients who underwent 128 surgical procedures for congenital or infantile cataracts before age 30 months for the type and frequency of postoperative complications. The surgeries included 92 limbal lensectomies and anterior vitrectomies, 13 pars plicata lensectomies, 20 aspirations, and three additional procedures. Complications developed after 21 of the 105 lensectomy and anterior vitrectomy procedures. Ten eyes (10%) required additional surgery for a secondary membrane, 12 eyes (11%) developed glaucoma, and one (1%) developed a retinal detachment. Patients who underwent surgery by 8 weeks of age had a significantly greater number of complications (P less than .025). Patients undergoing cataract surgery early in life should be routinely examined for possible postoperative glaucoma. The best method for reducing secondary membrane formation and some types of glaucoma appears to be an extensive removal of the lens cortex, posterior capsule, and anterior vitreous.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Anterior Chamber / pathology
  • Cataract / congenital*
  • Cataract Extraction / adverse effects*
  • Cataract Extraction / methods
  • Child, Preschool
  • Eye Diseases / etiology
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Glaucoma / etiology
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Postoperative Complications*
  • Visual Acuity
  • Vitrectomy / methods