Purpose: Previous studies of outcome in children with aphakia have approached the data by grouping patients according to features such as age at surgery, type of procedure, or some other common attribute. The purpose of this study is to identify factors predictive for visual outcome and complications in pediatric patients with cataracts.
Method: One hundred seventy-four eyes in 118 patients underwent lensectomy and anterior vitrectomy for congenital or juvenile cataracts. All received early optical correction, occlusion therapy when necessary, and follow-up for at least 6 months. Visual outcome and complications were analyzed statistically to determine predictive factors. Features analyzed included cataract type, laterality, age at onset, follow-up, and corneal size.
Results: Statistical analysis showed that the most important predictor of long-term visual outcome and complications is cataract type. Visual outcome differed significantly by cataract type, with best results in the lamellar and posterior lentiglobus groups. Unilateral cases had a mean acuity lower than bilateral cases. Other factors, such as age at surgery and corneal size, were less predictive but closely linked to cataract type. Complications, such as aphakic glaucoma, also were more closely linked to the type of cataract than to other variables.
Conclusion: The results indicate that an important determinant of long-term outcome and complications in aphakic children is cataract type. Other features were found to be closely correlated to cataract type and were not independently significant.