Outcomes of cataract surgery in eyes with a low corneal endothelial cell density

Katsuya Yamazoe, Takefumi Yamaguchi, Kazuki Hotta, Yoshiyuki Satake, Kenji Konomi, Seika Den, Jun Shimazaki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To evaluate the surgical outcomes of cataract surgery in eyes with a low preoperative corneal endothelial cell density (ECD) and analyze factors affecting the prognosis. Setting: Tokyo Dental College, Ichikawa General Hospital, Chiba, Japan. Design: Noncomparative case series. Methods: Eyes with a preoperative ECD of less than 1000 cells/mm 2 that had cataract surgery between 2006 and 2010 were identified. Standard phacoemulsification with intraocular lenses was performed using the soft-shell technique. The rate of endothelial cell loss, incidence of bullous keratopathy, and risk factors were retrospectively assessed. Results: Sixty-one eyes (53 patients) with a low preoperative ECD were identified. Preoperative diagnoses or factors regarded as causing endothelial cell loss included Fuchs dystrophy (20 eyes), laser iridotomy (16 eyes), keratoplasty (10 eyes), traumatic injury (3 eyes), trabeculectomy (3 eyes), corneal endotheliitis (2 eyes), and other (7 eyes). The corrected distance visual acuity improved from 0.59 ± 0.49 logMAR preoperatively to 0.32 ± 0.48 logMAR postoperatively (P<.001). The mean ECD was 693 ± 172 cells/mm 2 and 611 ± 203 cells/mm 2, respectively (P=.001). The mean rate of endothelial cell loss was 11.5% ± 23.4%. Greater ECD loss was associated with a shorter axial length (AL) (<23.0 mm) and diabetes mellitus. Bullous keratopathy developed in 9 eyes (14.8%) and was associated with posterior capsule rupture. Conclusions: The results suggest that modern techniques for cataract surgery provide excellent visual rehabilitation in many patients with a low preoperative ECD. Shorter AL, diabetes mellitus, and posterior capsule rupture were risk factors for greater ECD loss and bullous keratopathy. Financial Disclosure: No author has a financial or proprietary interest in any material or method mentioned.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2130-2136
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Cataract and Refractive Surgery
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Dec
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems


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