The mortality associated with ophthalmological surgery during 1962 through 1971 at Eye and Ear Hospital, Pittsburgh, was reviewed. A total of 31,322 procedures were performed. The study was broken into two five-year periods. In the first five-year period, the mortality for all ocular surgery was 0.71 per 1,000. A total of 14,167 procedures were performed with ten deaths, two of which occurred intraoperatively with the patients under local anesthetic.
In the second five-year period, there were nine deaths among 17,155 procedures, none of which occurred intraoperatively. The death rate related to general and local anesthesia was 0.69 per 1,000 and 0.35 per 1,000, respectively. All deaths were patients aged 70 to 90 years and occurred from 1 to 18 days postoperatively. Intraoperative death rate in the first period fell from 14,167 or 0.14 per 1,000 to 0 per 17,155 in the second period.
Petruscak J, Smith RB, Breslin P. Mortality Related to Ophthalmological Surgery. Arch Ophthalmol. 1973;89(2):106-109. doi:10.1001/archopht.1973.01000040108008