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From the Archives of the Archives
September 2000

A look at the past . . .

Arch Ophthalmol. 2000;118(9):1215. doi:10.1001/archopht.118.9.1215

As most of the failures in cataract extraction in recent years are in one way or another due to the lack of control of the opening in the cornea during the operation, or to its accidental opening afterwards, the use of the suture has naturally suggested itself to surgeons, some of whom have reported encouraging results . . .

Dr. H. W. Williams, of Boston, was the first operator to practise suture of the cornea after cataract extraction in man. He reported forty-eight cases in 1867 with 4 per cent. of iris prolapse and no case of suppuration. His needle was 6 mm long with flat cutting points. It was held with forceps. The suture consisted of a single strand of fine silk. This was inserted after the removal of the lens. It did not enter the anterior chamber, but passed through the superficial edges of the incision.

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