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 Table of Contents  
Year : 2023  |  Volume : 37  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 60-62

Suprachoroidal hemorrhage following sutureless scleral-fixated intraocular lens – A case series

1 Vitreoretina Services, Aravind Eye Hospital and Postgraduate Institute of Ophthalmology, Puducherry, India
2 Vitreoretina Services, Aravind Eye Hospital and Postgraduate Institute of Ophthalmology, Puducherry; Department of Ophthalmology, AIIMS, Mangalagiri, Andhra Pradesh, India
3 Vitreoretina Services, Aravind Eye Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Submission08-Oct-2020
Date of Decision15-Jul-2021
Date of Acceptance12-Aug-2021
Date of Web Publication17-Nov-2021

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Manavi D Sindal
Vitreoretina Services, Aravind Eye Hospital, Thavalakuppam, Cuddalore Main Road, Puducherry - 605 007
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/SJOPT.SJOPT_23_20

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Suprachoroidal hemorrhage (SH) is a rare complication of scleral-fixated intraocular lens (SFIOL). In this series, we report three cases of sutureless SFIOL who developed SH postoperatively. Details of surgery, treatment, and outcome were analyzed. Two cases had limited SH which resolved with conservative treatment and had optimum visual recovery. One case developed massive SH needing surgical drainage, with final best-corrected visual acuity of 6/18 due to a persistent retinal fold. SH can be a potential complication while creating scleral grooves for haptic fixation. The use of a bent needle instead of a straight microvitreoretinal knife while creating scleral grooves might reduce the risk of SH in sutureless SFIOL surgeries.

Keywords: Suprachoroidal hemorrhage, sutureless scleral-fixated intraocular lens, vitreoretinal surgery

How to cite this article:
Sindal MD, Ganne P, Baskaran P, Srivastav K. Suprachoroidal hemorrhage following sutureless scleral-fixated intraocular lens – A case series. Saudi J Ophthalmol 2023;37:60-2

How to cite this URL:
Sindal MD, Ganne P, Baskaran P, Srivastav K. Suprachoroidal hemorrhage following sutureless scleral-fixated intraocular lens – A case series. Saudi J Ophthalmol [serial online] 2023 [cited 2023 Mar 24];37:60-2. Available from: https://www.saudijophthalmol.org/text.asp?2023/37/1/60/330517

  Introduction Top

Suprachoroidal hemorrhage (SH) is a devastating complication of intraocular surgery. While the incidence of SH following sutured scleral-fixated intraocular lens (SFIOL) is reported to be 3%,[1] there are no reports following sutureless SFIOL surgery.[2] SH can be intraoperative or postoperative,[3] limited, or massive.[4] In our institution, we performed 572 sutureless SFIOL surgeries in 2016–2017, of which we encountered SH in three cases. Here, we report these three cases of SH following an uneventful sutureless SFIOL surgery and postulate the possible mechanisms underlying it.

  Case Reports Top

Case 1

A 70-year-old male with an inferiorly subluxated capsular bag with intraocular lens (IOL) with pseudoexfoliation, underwent 25-gauge (G) pars plana vitrectomy (PPV) with IOL explantation and sutureless SFIOL as described by Scharioth et al.[5] Partial-thickness scleral grooves were made using a 23G microvitreoretinal (MVR) knife at horizontal meridians, slightly above 3 o'clock and below 9 o'clock. A 25G intraocular forceps (Scharioth IOL scleral fixation forceps, 25G/0.5 mm, 1286 SFD, DORC International BV) was used to exteriorize and tuck the haptics into the grooves. On the first postoperative day (POD), ultrasound examination showed SH limited to nasal and temporal quadrants. The patient was given topical steroids and cycloplegics. SH resolved by 1 month.

Case 2

A 49-year-old male presented with secondary angle-closure glaucoma following a traumatic anterior subluxation of the crystalline lens in the left eye, with intraocular pressure (IOP) of 48 mmHg. He underwent PPV with lensectomy after IOP control. Endolaser photocoagulation was done around the intraoperatively diagnosed dialysis with perfluoropropane (C3F8) tamponade. SFIOL was deferred. Six months later, he underwent uneventful sutureless SFIOL as described above. On the first POD, there were total hyphema and dispersed vitreous hemorrhage with limited SH in the nasal and temporal quadrants. SH resolved in a month with conservative treatment.

Case 3

A 40-year-old male presented with poor vision in his right eye, post laser capsulotomy for posterior capsular opacification with extensive pitting of the IOL. He was scheduled for an IOL exchange, during which the capsular bag was inadvertently removed. He underwent 25G PPV with uneventful sutureless SFIOL. On the first POD, ultrasound examination revealed massive central appositional SH [Figure 1]a. Initial conservative management, followed by choroidal drainage, after noting clot lysis on ultrasonography, was done. One month postoperatively, SH had resolved completely, with a persistent retinal fold at macula [Figure 1]b.
Figure 1: (a) B-scan ultrasonography of case 3 showing appositional suprachoroidal hemorrhage; (b) Spectral-domain optical coherence tomography showing persistent retinal fold at macula after resolution of suprachoroidal hemorrhage

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The baseline characteristics and follow-up details of all the three cases are summarized in [Table 1]. Patient consent was obtained for publication of the details.
Table 1: Baseline and follow-up characteristics of all cases

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  Discussion Top

SH is a rare but potentially blinding complication of intraocular surgeries. To the best of our knowledge, SH has never been reported in the setting of sutureless SFIOL before. In a previous case series of 109 eyes with scleral fixation of IOLs, with 59 eyes having sutureless SFIOL, we did not encounter any case of intraoperative or postoperative SH.[2],[6] The predisposing factors include advanced age, myopia, history of hypertension, aphakia, and immediate postoperative hypotony.[3],[7],[8] The mechanisms underlying it include acute changes in IOP which are transmitted across the walls of the posterior ciliary vessels causing their rupture or direct damage to the ciliary vessels by sharp instruments.[9]

Advanced age has been reported to increase the risk due to fragility of the choroidal vessels. Chandra et al.[7] have shown a positive association between the use of anticoagulants and SH. Only one of our patients was elderly and the other two were middle aged. None of them were on anticoagulants. Myopia has been significantly associated with delayed SH.[7],[8] Low scleral rigidity and choroidal vascular fragility are implicated in this association. In our series, all patients had normal axial lengths.

Immediate postoperative hypotony increases the risk of delayed SH, especially when the preoperative IOP is high.[3] One patient in our series with posttraumatic glaucoma underwent a staged surgery after medical control of IOP. All our cases had low IOP on POD 1, which may have aggravated the SH as discussed further.

Two cases with limited SH recovered normal vision with conservative treatment. One patient had central appositional SH. Surgical drainage after clot lysis is evident is recommended for patients with central appositional choroidal configuration, associated retinal detachment, a persistent flat anterior chamber, or uncontrolled IOP. The visual outcomes in eyes with appositional hemorrhage are reported to be poor.[4] Our patient had a fairly good outcome despite the hemorrhage being massive, with his vision not improving beyond 6/18 due to a retinal fold across the fovea.

A possible explanation lies in the fact that the long posterior ciliary arteries pierce the sclera (at 3 and 9 o'clock meridians) at the posterior pole itself and then run anteriorly between the sclera and the choroid to join the major arterial circle located at the root of the iris. The superficial ciliary branch continues forward to form the episcleral arterial circle. Most importantly, both these arterial plexuses encircle the globe posterior to the limbus.[9] We postulate that direct trauma by the sharp MVR to the arterial circle due to an inadvertent deep scleral groove may have caused the SH. Both these factors of direct trauma to the ciliary vessels intraoperatively and reduced IOP in the immediate postoperative period contributed to SH. The risk of making a deeper groove is increased with a straight MVR blade. This is because the supraorbital ridge does not allow the shaft of the blade to be made parallel to the ocular surface while fashioning the tunnel [Figure 2]a. Further, the left-sided tunnel requires an awkward positioning of the surgeon's arm making the depth unpredictable. Using an instrument like a bent 24G needle, a bent MVR or an angled side port knife may facilitate a more controlled way of making grooves, and thereby reduce the risk of making a deeper groove [Figure 2]b.
Figure 2: (a) Intraoperative photograph showing a straight microvitreoretinal knife being used to fashion the scleral grooves for fixing haptics. Note the orbital rim preventing the instrument from being kept tangential to the ocular surface. (b) The use of a bent 24-gauge needle in the same situation solves this problem

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During sutureless SFIOL surgery, careful attention to the depth of the scleral grooves and avoiding immediate postoperative hypotony is recommended to avoid disastrous complications like SH.

Declaration of patient consent

The authors certify that they have obtained all appropriate patient consent forms. In the form, the patients have given their consent for their images and other clinical information to be reported in the journal. The patients understand that their names and initials will not be published and due efforts will be made to conceal their identity, but anonymity cannot be guaranteed.

Financial support and sponsorship


Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

  References Top

Solomon K, Gussler JR, Gussler C, Van Meter WS. Incidence and management of complications of transsclerally sutured posterior chamber lenses. J Cataract Refract Surg 1993;19:488-93.  Back to cited text no. 1
Sindal MD, Nakhwa CP, Sengupta S. Comparison of sutured versus sutureless scleral-fixated intraocular lenses. J Cataract Refract Surg 2016;42:27-34.  Back to cited text no. 2
Jeganathan VS, Ghosh S, Ruddle JB, Gupta V, Coote MA, Crowston JG. Risk factors for delayed suprachoroidal haemorrhage following glaucoma surgery. Br J Ophthalmol 2008;92:1393-6.  Back to cited text no. 3
Meier P, Wiedemann P. Massive suprachoroidal hemorrhage: Secondary treatment and outcome. Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol 2000;238:28-32.  Back to cited text no. 4
Scharioth GB, Prasad S, Georgalas I, Tataru C, Pavlidis M. Intermediate results of sutureless intrascleral posterior chamber intraocular lens fixation. J Cataract Refract Surg 2010;36:254-9.  Back to cited text no. 5
Sindal MD, Nakhwa CP, Sengupta S. Reply. J Cataract Refract Surg 2016;42:806.  Back to cited text no. 6
Chandra A, Xing W, Kadhim MR, Williamson TH. Suprachoroidal hemorrhage in pars plana vitrectomy: Risk factors and outcomes over 10 years. Ophthalmology 2014;121:311-7.  Back to cited text no. 7
Reibaldi M, Longo A, Romano MR, Cennamo G, Mariotti C, Boscia F, et al. Delayed suprachoroidal hemorrhage after pars plana vitrectomy: Five-year results of a retrospective multicenter cohort study. Am J Ophthalmol 2015;160:1235-42.e1.  Back to cited text no. 8
Lutty GA, Bhutto I, McLeod DS. Anatomy of the ocular vasculatures. InOcular blood flow. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer; 2012. p. 3-21.  Back to cited text no. 9


  [Figure 1], [Figure 2]

  [Table 1]


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