Journal article Open Access

THE PREFERENCES AND PRACTICES OF OPHTHALMOLOGISTS REGARDING REFRACTIVE SURGERIES IN MIDDLE EAST COUNTRIES

Abdullhamid AL- Ghamdi , Rahma A.Algethami , Yousef Alharbi , Nada Almalki , lama Aljohani , Abdulrahman Al-Amri , Ma'an Al-Barry

Background and Objectives: Refractive errors are the leading cause of impairments visual impairments in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Laser refractive eye surgeries are getting huge popularity for correcting these visual impairments in KSA and other gulf countries. The study assessed the preferences and practices of ophthalmologists regarding refractive surgeries in Middle East countries.

Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted using an online questionnaire among the Saudi Ophthalmology Society (SOS) members. The questionnaire was pilot tested and had 28 items that included sociodemographic details and practices related to refractive eye surgery of participating ophthalmologists. The data collected were subjected to statistical analysis, and Pearson’s chi-square test was used to find the relationship between categorical variables.

Results: Excimer laser platform EX 500 (Alcon) was the most commonly used Refractive surgery system. There were region-wide differences observed in the type of Refractive surgery system where surgeons from central KSA used AMARIS 1050 RS (SCHWIND) (83.4%) and AMARIS 500 (SCHWIND) (68.4%) comparatively more than other regions (p<0.05). The majority of the eye surgeons (84.4%) used Pentacam Comprehensive Eye Scanner preoperative screening, and Corneal Topography was the most commonly used preoperative examination method. Only 9.1% of the surgeons had refractive eye surgery on 75-100% of their patients, and the most commonly preferred RES by the surgeons in our study was Photorefractive Keratectomy [PRK].

Conclusion: The findings showed that refractive eye surgery trends are changing, and surgeons are shifting to more reliable techniques with fewer post-surgical complications.

Keywords: Refractive errors, Refractive surgeries, Ophthalmologists, Saudi Arabia

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