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ASCRS looks forward during milestone meeting

Publication
Article
Digital EditionOphthalmology Times: May 2024
Volume 49
Issue 5

Recent sessions cast spotlight on emerging technologies and therapies.

(Image Credit: AdobeStock/PhotoHunter)

(Image Credit: AdobeStock/PhotoHunter)

The American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ASCRS) celebrated its 50th anniversary as the association hosted its annual meeting in Boston, Massachusetts, from April 5 to 8, 2024. Although the ASCRS meeting celebrated the past, it also looked toward the future and featured a look at some upcoming technologies and therapies, featuring more than 200 exhibitors presenting their research. Its main program, designed for surgeons, provided more than 300 hours of educational opportunities.

Subspeciality Day featured 3 distinct programs—Refractive Day, Cornea Day, and Glaucoma Day–allowing attendees to mix and match or focus solely on one area of interest. Refractive Day focused on “understanding the patients’ lifelong refractive journey,” covering everything from phakic IOLs to refractive cataract surgery. Cornea Day looked at corneal infections and keratoplasty procedures via panel discussions, case studies, debates, and surgical video reviews. Finally, Glaucoma Day set to expand attendees’ knowledge on treatment options, including medications and technologies.

Refractive journey from surgery onward

Among the many updates to refractive cataract surgery were study results from Tsontcho Ianchulev, MD, MPS, professor of ophthalmology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York, New York, showing that adjunctive fragmentation pretreatment of the crystalline lens using the miLoop (Zeiss) technology during cataract surgery showed improved lensectomy time and fluidic efficiency compared with femtosecond laser pretreatment and no pretreatment. The study showed that nucleus evacuation times were 24% and 19% faster with miLoop and femto pretreatment, respectively, compared with no pretreatment.

Adam Muzychuk, MD, BSc, FRCSC, presented data on the outcomes of an ultralow cylinder power toric IOL vs a nontoric control, which showed that patients who underwent implantation with a 0.90 toric had a significantly greater reduction in astigmatism postoperatively. “The importance of this study is there are still regulatory regions, such as the United States, where 0.90-D torics do not exist [because of] regulatory requirements that have not yet passed, as well as 1.0-D [torics]…these lenses work,” Muzychuk said in an interview with Ophthalmology Times Europe®.

Bhargavee Gnanasambandam, MS, of the Carle Illinois College of Medicine in Urbana, presented data on 6 cases of development of endophthalmitis after drop-less cataract surgery during 1 day of surgeries. Tri-Moxi injection 0.1 mL (Imprimis Pharmaceuticals, Inc) was administered at the end of the surgeries. “The injection of batch solution in drop-less cataract surgery creates a risk of cohort infection,” the authors said.

Looking at post surgery, Oculis Holding AG announced positive results from the phase 3 OPTIMIZE-1 trial of OCS-01 for the treatment of inflammation and pain following cataract surgery at the event. Eric Donnenfeld, MD, presented the results and shared that 57.2% of patients treated with OCS-01 were inflammation free at day 15 and 75.5% had absence of ocular pain at day 4.

Corneal endothelial disease and keratitis insights

During a retrospective chart review of patients who underwent PRK and were diagnosed with infectious keratitis before and during the COVID-19 pandemic (January 2015 to January 2021), researchers stated that “the rate of infectious keratitis after PRK increased during the COVID-19 pandemic. This may have been due to the increased use of face masks in this era.”

Furthermore, a study conducted by researchers from Harvard Medical School’s Massachusetts Eye & Ear in Boston found that systemic antifungal treatment for fungal keratitis can result in elevated liver function test results. “Patients who receive systemic antifungal treatment for fungal keratitis are more likely to have elevated liver function test results than patients receiving topical antifungal treatment,” the researchers said, also advising clinicians to monitor liver function in these patients.

Eris Jordan, OD, vice president of global clinical and medical affairs at Aurion Biotech, shared insights on the company’s first novel cell therapy trial in North America, which has seen quick enrollment and data expected in the latter half of this year.

Elizabeth Yeu, MD, was a part of Aurion phase 1 and 2 studies in El Salvador looking at the human corneal endothelial cells with a proprietary ROCK inhibitor to determine the right dosing. She told Ophthalmology Times Europe about an 85-year-old patient with cataract, with 20/800 vision and a 700-µm cornea. After treatment, there was a 200-µm decrease in the corneal thickness, from 700 µm to 500 µm. By postop month 6, there was gradual improvement of vision, but the patient was 20/25 with a 500- µm cornea from limbus to limbus.

Glaucoma updates

The glaucoma space saw its fair share of news, in addition to refractive and cornea. For instance, an evaluation of the fixed-dose combination of netarsudil 0.02%/latanoprost 0.005% (Rocklatan; Alcon) instilled once daily in patients with glaucoma showed that the patients achieved the targeted IOP levels and would be willing to continue treatment with the formulation.

Valerie Trubnik, MD, FACS, of Ophthalmic Consultants of Long Island in Mineola, New York, and coauthors explained that due to concerns about hyperemia being expressed in the past, physicians may have not recommended to adopt the drug. After the study, most patients (92.7%) “reported comfort with the medication, and 78.2% experienced a similar or better level of comfort as [with] previous medications.”

Information was shared in a 2-year pivotal trial for the safety and efficacy of a new intracameral medication implant, travoprost [OTX-TIC; Ocular Therapeutix, Inc], that showed there was a reduction in IOP, despite there not being a preselected statistical analysis for clinical statistical significance. Although Pete England, vice president of ViaLase, Inc, shared information about 36-month data from the first in-human study, demonstrating the safety and IOP lowering efficacy of the FLigHT treatment.

The focus on subspecialties illuminated the many facets of ophthalmology offers attendees the opportunity to delve deep into refractive, corneal, and glaucoma realms. Refractive Day guided through the intricate journey of patients’ vision, shedding light on revolutionary advancements in cataract surgery and astigmatism correction; Cornea Day illuminated the path forward in combating infections and refining keratoplasty techniques; and Glaucoma Day broadened the understanding of treatment modalities and patient care strategies.

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