Original Article

The Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer Thickness Changes Evaluated by Optical Coherence Tomography After Phacoemulsification Surgery


  • Cumali Değirmenci
  • Filiz Afrashi
  • Serhad Nalçacı
  • Suzan Güven Yılmaz

Received Date: 23.06.2013 Accepted Date: 25.03.2014 Turk J Ophthalmol 2014;44(4):284-287


To evaluate the retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness by optical coherence tomography (OCT) before and after cataract surgery.

Materials and Methods:

In our study, we included 44 eyes of 44 patients who underwent uncomplicated cataract surgery and had no preexisting pathology involving the retina, optic nerve, or cornea. All patients were scanned by OCT for RNFL measurements 1 day before and 1 month after cataract surgery. The grading of cataract was based on the Lens Opacities Classification System III (LOCS III).


The mean age of patients was 62.68±9.46 years. The mean best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) was 0.29±0.12 preoperatively and 0.93±0.12 at postoperative one month. The mean RNFL thickness preoperatively was 89.43±23.0 µ and postoperatively was 106.57±12.5 µ. The difference was statistically significant. The mean image quality preoperatively was 44.53% and postoperatively was 63.51%. The difference was also statistically significant.


The presence of cataract may affect the image quality of OCT leading to lower RNFL thickness values than expected. Cataract surgery increases the image quality of OCT and allows accurate RNFL measurements.

Keywords: Cataract surgery, optic coherence tomography, retinal nerve fiber layer thickness

Full Text (Turkish)