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Ischemic Optic Neuropathy Following Cataract Surgery
NOTE: This article has been updated since print publication. In the original article, EyeNet removed part of the quote from Heather Moss, MD, PhD, for reasons of space. Regrettably, important content was lost in the abridgment. The article below reinstates the full quote.
Analyzing de-identified electronic health record (EHR) data from the IRIS Registry, Verana Health determined the number of patients seen for a diagnosis of ischemic optic neuropathy within 90 days after cataract surgery from 2016 through 2020.
The study found 6,152,870 cataract surgeries among 3,745,487 unique patients with at least 90 days of follow-up. The number of cataract surgeries performed stayed relatively stable across 2016-2019 and declined in 2020, in keeping with a previous study on ophthalmology-related patient visits during the COVID-19 pandemic.1 Ischemic optic neuropathy was reported within 90 days post-op in 5,915 patient eyes during the study period; the percentage of cases reporting ischemic optic neuropathy within 90 days postoperatively stayed consistent across these five years.
“There are conflicting data on whether cataract surgery is a risk factor for ischemic optic neuropathy based on previous single-center studies with small case numbers,2 said Heather Moss, MD, PhD, at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. “This finding demonstrates the potential for much larger sample sizes using real world data from a large, well-curated clinical database with 3,500 participating practices. Through careful study design including rigorous case selection and comparison with appropriate controls, this may help shed light on unresolved questions, in this case whether ischemic optic neuropathy incidence is increased after cataract surgery.”
1 Leng T et al. Ophthalmology. Published online June 16, 2021.
2 McCulley TJ et al. J Neuro-Ophthalmol. 2021;41(1):119-125.
Note: The Academy has partnered with Verana Health (www.veranahealth.com) to curate and analyze IRIS Registry data.