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Post-operative endophthalmitis (POE) following cataract surgery is an uncommon, vision-threatening complication that has been reported to occur at rates of between approximately 0.03% and 0.2%. Prompt diagnosis and treatment of endophthalmitis is critical for minimizing vision loss, but most recent efforts have focused on the prophylactic administration of antibiotics to prevent the development of endophthalmitis. Surgeons from around the world have different topical and intracameral antibiotic usage patterns to prevent endophthalmitis, and to date no general consensus regarding best practice has emerged. Several studies have reported on the routine use of intracameral cefuroxime, moxifloxacin, and vancomycin, including a single randomized clinical trial by the European Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ESCRS) in 2007. These studies have notable shortcomings, but many authors suggest that intracameral cefuroxime together with topical antibiotics probably decreases the risk of endophthalmitis. However, the deleterious effects of routine prophylactic antibiotics, which include toxicity, cost, and increasing antimicrobial resistance, among others, are noteworthy. In contrast, aseptic technique with pre-operative instillation of povidone-iodine remains the only technique supported by level I evidence to reduce the incidence of endophthalmitis. Although the routine use of intracameral antibiotics continues to increase throughout the world, data from multicenter, randomized, prospective trials is needed to provide better guidance regarding the prophylactic use of antibiotics.
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- The Routine Use of Intracameral Antibiotics to Prevent Endophthalmitis After Cataract Surgery: How Good is the Evidence?
Nicholas K. George
Michael W. Stewart
- Springer Healthcare
Ophthalmology and Therapy
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