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June 1995

Calcific Phacolysis: Salvageable Vision Following Treatment

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Ophthalmology, New York (NY) University Medical Center (Dr Charles), and the Manhattan (NY) Eye, Ear, and Throat Hospital (Dr Rabin).

Arch Ophthalmol. 1995;113(6):786-788. doi:10.1001/archopht.1995.01100060112045

Calcific phacolysis has been previously described histopathologically in the enucleated eyes of three patients with unilateral posttraumatic total blindness. Each eye showed dissolution of a mature cataractous lens with dispersion of calcific lens material throughout the globe. We studied a patient in whom the signs of calcific phacolysis developed 19 months following intraoperative dislocation of a cataract into the vitreous. Partial removal of calcific particles was achieved by subtotal vitrectomy and lensectomy, with subsequent penetrating keratoplasty. Corneal histopathological findings showed a deposition of calcified lens particles between Descemet's membrane and retrocorneal fibrous membrane. Despite diffuse retinal calcification, the patient's visual acuity was 20/400. To our knowledge, this is the first report of calcific phacolysis occurring after surgical dislocation of a cataract into the vitreous and wherein treatment resulted in some preservation of vision. Early diagnosis and aggressive therapy may improve the visual prognosis in this condition.

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