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BioMed Research International
Volume 2018, Article ID 7242837, 8 pages
Clinical Study

Anterior Capsule of the Lens: Comparison of Morphological Properties and Apoptosis Induction following FLACS and Standard Phacoemulsification Surgery

1Institute of Ophthalmology, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy
2Department of Surgery, Medicine, Dentistry and Morphological Sciences, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy
3Clinical and Experimental Medicine PhD Program, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy

Correspondence should be addressed to Alessandra Pisciotta; ti.erominu@attoicsip.ardnassela and Michele De Maria; moc.liamg@68airamed.elehcim

Received 12 October 2017; Accepted 17 December 2017; Published 11 January 2018

Academic Editor: Gaurav Prakash

Copyright © 2018 Alessandra Pisciotta et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Purpose. Comparative evaluation of morphological features of anterior capsules and apoptosis induction in epithelial cells after femtosecond laser-assisted cataract surgery (FLACS) and standard phacoemulsification surgery. Methods. Group 1: 30 FLACS anterior capsulotomies and Group 2: 30 manual anterior continuous curvilinear capsulorhexes. All patients were operated on by the same experienced surgeon. Morphological features of the anterior capsules and apoptosis induction in epithelial cells were evaluated. Results. All patients revealed a significant mean best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) improvement 3 months after surgery, and no major intraoperative nor postoperative complications occurred. The capsular epithelium appeared to be preserved in both groups. Scanning electron microscopy analysis revealed irregular saw-tooth shaped edges in capsules from Group 1 whereas capsules from Group 2 showed regular and smooth edges. A statistically significant higher expression of the downstream apoptotic effector cleaved caspase 3 was observed in Group 1. Conclusions. The saw-tooth appearance was likely due to the progressive sequence of laser pulses on the capsule. The low energy/high frequency properties of the laser pulse, combined with an overlapped pulse pattern, resulted in highly continuous morphology of capsule edges. The higher apoptosis induction in FLACS group might be due to photodisruption-dependent plasma generation and formation of cavitation bubbles.