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Visual Recovery After Immediately Sequential Bilateral Cataract Surgery at a Veterans’ Hospital

Kathleen Kwedar, Joseph Arnold, Nathan Hesemann

Abstract: Purpose: To answer patient questions about the expected timeline for recovery, the objective post-operative visual acuities were reviewed for patients undergoing immediately sequential bilateral cataract surgery (ISBCS). Setting: Harry S. Truman Memorial Veterans’ Hospital in Columbia, Missouri. Design: Retrospective chart review. Methods: All patients who underwent ISBCS in 2019 were evaluated. A total of 116 patients (232 eyes) were studied. Uncorrected distance visual acuity (UDVA) for post-op day 0 or post-op day 1 (POD0/1), post-op week 1 (POW1), and post-op month 1 (POM1) were required for study inclusion. Patients with ocular comorbidities were not excluded, though all patients passed an initial screen in order to qualify for ISBCS. Outcome measures included POD0/1, POW1, and POM1 UDVA. Results: Postoperative UDVA was stable or improved compared to pre-operative corrected VA (CDVA) for 48% (66/138) of eyes on POD0, 79% (74/94) of eyes on POD1, and 90% (209/232) of eyes on POW1. 83% of patients at POD1 and 90% of patients at POW1 had stable or improved VA in at least one eye. 92% (214/232) of eyes had a POW1 UDVA of 20/40 or better. Of the 18 eyes with a postoperative POW1 UDVA of 20/50 or worse, 5 (28%) were known pre-operatively to have limited visual potential. 99% (115/116) of patients had at least one eye 20/40 or better. Conclusions: Most patients who underwent ISBCS demonstrated meaningful improvement in UDVA compared to pre-operative CDVA as early as POD1. These results serve to guide discussion of post-operative expectations with patients interested in ISBCS.
Keywords: post op / visual / patients who underwent ISBCS / eyes

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