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Studying the aging lens using aberrometry: Zernicke cataracts

Poster Details

First Author: N.Negalur INDIA

Co Author(s):    K. Deshpande   R. Shroff   M. Thakkar   M. Kurian   S. Das   R. Shetty     

Abstract Details


To study the internal aberrations in patients complaining of poor image quality until development of clinically significant cataract. 


Tertiary eye hospital in Bangalore, India


This was a prospective, observational cross-sectional study. Mean Refractive Spherical Equivalent (MRSE) was <+/-0.75D. 150 patients >45 years of age who presented with ghosting and poor visual quality without clinically significant cataract (Lens Opacities Classification III) were studied for aberrations using the Nidek Optical Path Difference III (Nidek OPDIII, Japan). Pentacam Nucleus Sclerosis (PNS) grading was done using the Pentacam (Oculus Optikgeräte GmbH, Wetzlar, Germany). Optical quality parameters, contrast sensitivity and Modulation transfer function were assessed and compared to 100 healthy subjects aged >30years.


Mean age of patients enrolled was (44+/- 3.4 years). While majority of patients showed grade 0, 30 patients (20%) showed a PNS grade of 1. High internal aberrations were noted in patients with PNS 0 (trefoil: 0.179microm; Spherical aberration: 0.208micron) compared to controls which increased as PNS grade increased to 1 (trefoil: 0.279 microns; coma: 0.356 microns; spherical aberration: 0.246 microns) suggestive of increased scatter, decreased MTF and lower quality of vision


Increase in internal aberrations may be an indicator of impending development of cataract and this in the absence clinical signs may be described as a Zernicke Cataract. Cataract surgery at this stage may be warranted if the patient is symptomatic. Studying the changes in values of internal aberrations may in the future change the outlook of operable cataracts.

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