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May 1962

Clinical Application of New Laboratory Data on Alpha Chymotrypsin

Author Affiliations

Vancouver, Wash.; Portland, Ore.
From the University of Oregon Medical School, Department of Ophthalmology.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1962;67(5):616-621. doi:10.1001/archopht.1962.00960020616017

Three years have elapsed since α-chymotrypsin was introduced as a useful adjunct in cataract surgery.1 Clinical reports as to the drug's merits have been conflicting.2-9 Laboratory data have been less conflicting, particularly in regard to adverse effects.10-14

Limbal Wound Strength  One area of controversy has centered around the question whether α-chymotrypsin decreases wound strength or retards wound healing. Many who use the drug have altered their surgical technique and have increased the number of sutures used in cataract surgery. Studies on rabbit and cat eyes have shown that corneal wound strength is not adversely affected by bathing wounds with α-chymotrypsin.10,13 Since most cataracts are removed through limbal wounds, an evaluation of limbal wound strength seemed in order.New Zealand white rabbits were used in these experiments. Intraperitoneal pentobarbital sodium (Nembutal) supplemented with topical 1% tetracaine (Pontocaine) provided the anesthesia. These studies on limbal wounds were

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