Official ESCRS | European Society of Cataract & Refractive Surgeons


Silicone-tipped irrigation and aspiration: rates of posterior capsule rupture

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Session Details

Session Title: Cataract Surgery Equipment

Session Date/Time: Monday 16/09/2019 | 08:30-10:30

Paper Time: 08:30

Venue: Free Paper Forum: Podium 3

First Author: : K.Bennett-Brown UK

Co Author(s): :    D. Gosling                             

Abstract Details


Silicone tipped irrigation-aspiration (IA) handpieces were introduced at the Royal Hallamshire hospital, Sheffield in late 2013, and shortly afterwards adopted for use by all surgeons in all cataract surgeries. We compare the posterior capsule rupture (PCR) rates before and after the switch, in both consultant and trainee grades.


Royal Hallamshire hospital, Sheffield, England.


A retrospective medisoft search identified consecutive cataract surgeries from 20 months before and after the switch from conventional metal-tipped to silicone-tipped handpieces. Chi-square test was performed on the data.


13,753 cases were included, performed by 47 surgeons (23 consultant; 24 trainee). Overall, the PCR rate reduced from 1.77% to 1.07% (Chi-squared test, p=<0.001). When analysing the trainee subgroup (n=3278), it reduced from 1.70% to 1.36%. This was not statistically significant (p=0.4).


This study demonstrates a reduced PCR rate of 0.7% when using the silicone-tipped IA handpiece. The benefit appeared to be less, and not statistically significant, for trainees. Based on these rates and an assumed cost of £500 per complication, the increased cost of silicone-tipped IA device should be less than £3.50 per patient for it to be cost beneficial.

Financial Disclosure:


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