Purpose: To investigate the amount of lenticule decentration following small-incision lenticule extraction (SMILE) by using the Keratron Scout tangential topography difference map, and the relationship between the magnitudes of total decentration and induced corneal higher-order aberrations (HOAs).
Methods: This retrospective observational case series study analyzed decentration values obtained from the Keratron Scout tangential topography difference map of 360 eyes (360 patients) that underwent SMILE. Root mean square total HOAs, third order coma aberration, fourth order spherical aberration, as well as individual coefficients for vertical and horizontal coma were measured preoperatively and 3-months postoperatively. Simple linear regression analysis and piecewise regression models were used to determine the relationship between the magnitudes of total decentration and induced corneal HOAs.
Results: The mean total decentration distance from the corneal vertex was 0.36 ± 0.22 mm (range, 0.02-1.27 mm). There were significant differences in total HOAs, coma, vertical and horizontal comas, and spherical aberration between preoperative and 3-month postoperative assessments. Significant relationships between the magnitudes of total decentration and induced corneal HOAs were noted. Subgroup analysis according to the degree of total decentration (group I, total decentered displacement ≤0.335 mm; and group II, total decentered displacement >0.335 mm) revealed that induced changes in total HOAs, coma, vertical coma, and spherical aberration were significantly larger in group II than in group I.
Conclusions: A minimal degree of decentration was closely related to a smaller induction of corneal HOAs. Efforts to optimize centration are critical for achieving better surgical outcomes in SMILE.