PURPOSE: Favorable outcome after cataract surgery depends on proper control of the inflammatory response induced by cataract surgery. Pseudophakic cystoid macular edema is an important cause of visual decline after uncomplicated cataract surgery. DESIGN: We compared the efficacy of topical steroids with topical nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) in controlling inflammation and preventing pseudophakic cystoid macular edema (PCME) after uncomplicated cataract surgery. PARTICIPANTS: Patients undergoing uncomplicated surgery for age-related cataract. METHODS: We performed a systematic literature search in Medline, CINAHL, Cochrane, and EMBASE databases to identify randomized trials published from 1996 onward comparing topical steroids with topical NSAIDs in controlling inflammation and preventing PCME in patients undergoing phacoemulsification with posterior chamber intraocular lens implantation for age-related cataract. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Postoperative inflammation and pseudophakic cystoid macular edema. RESULTS: Fifteen randomized trials were identified. Postoperative inflammation was less in patients randomized to NSAIDs. The prevalence of PCME was significantly higher in the steroid group than in the NSAID group: 3.8% versus 25.3% of patients, risk ratio 5.35 (95% confidence interval, 2.94-9.76). There was no statistically significant difference in the number of adverse events in the 2 treatment groups. CONCLUSIONS: We found low to moderate quality of evidence that topical NSAIDs are more effective in controlling postoperative inflammation after cataract surgery. We found high-quality evidence that topical NSAIDs are more effective than topical steroids in preventing PCME. The use of topical NSAIDs was not associated with an increased events. We recommend using topical NSAIDs to prevent inflammation and PCME after routine cataract surgery.
Journal review article
Ophthalmology, 2014, Vol 121, Issue 10, p. 1915-24