In this initial study, we model the impact of crystalline lens movement and tilt, which we postulate are a potential consequence of scleral expansion surgery (SES). We demonstrate the possibility that these lead to an improvement in near vision with no concurrent restoration of lens accommodative function. With the implantation of scleral expansion bands (SEB), Schachar predicts an increase in the amplitude of accommodation not observed objectively. We postulate that the SEB implants cause the crystalline lens to be shifted forward and become misaligned. Using mathematical models of the optics of the human eye, we assess the effects of our postulate on the power of the eye, the depth of field, optical aberrations, and the appearance of the horizontal retinoscopic reflex.
Using anatomically based models of the human eye, the postulated effects of SES are theoretically modeled and optically analyzed in Code V for unintentional lens anterior movement, tilts, and decentrations of up to 1 mm, ± 3°, and ± 0.3mm, respectively. The transverse aberrations are calculated before and after SES. Because it has been reported that the appearance of the retinoscopic reflex is consistent with the presence of excess aberrations, we also predict the appearance of the one-dimensional retinoscopic reflex for our models. The change in refractive error is also determined.
Unintentional lens shift, tilt, and decentration, as might occur as a result of SES surgery, would result in an increase in the total power of the eye along with an increase in asymmetric aberrations and little change in symmetric aberrations. The calculated appearances of the retinoscopic reflexes pre- and postsurgery are consistent with observations in the literature.
Scleral expansion surgery could produce an improvement in near vision through an unintentional anterior displacement of the crystalline lens in combination with excess tilts and decentrations rather than as a result of a restoration of lens accommodation. There is a need for measurements and further analysis of the optical and visual properties of SES patients postsurgery.