The Effect of LASIK on Timing of Cataract Surgery

J Refract Surg. 2016 May 1;32(5):306-10. doi: 10.3928/1081597X-20160217-07.


Purpose: To compare the age at the time of cataract surgery in patients who have undergone microkeratome-assisted LASIK versus individuals matched for axial length, cataract grade, and visual acuity with no history of refractive surgery.

Methods: Retrospective chart review of patients who underwent cataract extraction between September 2013 and March 2015 at the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute. Patients had a history of either microkeratome-assisted LASIK or no prior ocular surgery. Corrected distance visual acuity (CDVA) before and after cataract extraction, uncorrected distance visual acuity (UDVA) before cataract extraction, gender, axial length, and cataract grade were assessed, along with age at the time of LASIK, age at the time of cataract extraction, and the time lapse between LASIK and cataract extraction.

Results: Fifty eyes of 38 patients were included in the LASIK group and 155 eyes of 136 patients were included in the control group. There was no significant difference between these groups with respect to gender (P = .87), CDVA before cataract extraction (P = .11), UDVA before cataract extraction (P = .09), axial length (P = .67), and cataract grade (P = .46). Mean age at the time of cataract extraction for patients in the LASIK group and control group were 64 ± 7 and 73 ± 8 years, respectively (P < .005). Negative correlations were found between age at time of cataract extraction and axial length in the LASIK and control groups (r = -0.18, P = .20 vs r = -0.36, P =. 01, respectively).

Conclusions: Microkeratome-assisted LASIK seems to be correlated with earlier cataract extraction. Patients with a history of microkeratome-assisted LASIK under-went cataract surgery a decade sooner than patients with similar demographic and ocular characteristics. [J Refract Surg. 2016;32(5):306-310.].

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Axial Length, Eye / pathology
  • Cataract / classification
  • Cataract Extraction / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Keratomileusis, Laser In Situ*
  • Lasers, Excimer / therapeutic use*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Time Factors
  • Visual Acuity / physiology