Introduction: Basic anatomical parameters in ophthalmology are variable in different countries according to ethnic groups, genetics and some environmental factors. The aim of this study was to determine the relationship between axial length (AL), anterior chamber depth (ACD) and intraocular lens power (IOL) in a referral center from eastern Iran among patients who had cataract surgery, in comparison to studies from other regions of the world. 

Methods: In a cross-sectional retrospective study from 2011 to 2013, the records of 698 cataract patients referring to Khatam Al Anbia general hospital in Mashhad, Iran were evaluated. We divided patients, based on their AL and ACD, into three separate groups and compared their results. The SPSS software was used for data analysis. The Chi-Square test and the Independent-samples t-test were used to compare qualitative and quantitative data between two groups, respectively. The Kendall and the Pearson product-moment correlation tests were used to assess the relationship between AL and ACD. The linear Regression model was used to obtain a mathematical model to estimate ACD, using AL, age and sex. 

Results: Among individuals who had normal AL (between 22-24.5mm), there was a positive correlation between AL and ACD (p<0.001, r=0.17), however, among individuals with short (AL<22mm) or long sightedness (AL>24.5mm), no significant correlation was detected. We also found that older people have shorter AL (p=0.001 and r=-0.287). Men have an average longer AL (23.7±2.4mm vs. 22.9±2.1mm; p<0.001) and deeper ACD compared to women (2.93±0.45mm vs. 2.82±0.42mm, p=0.002).

Conclusion: Our findings were mostly similar to previous literature from other regions of the world and although some anatomical variations may exist regarding ophthalmic anatomy, factors like race and geographical area have little effect on the relationship between ACD, AL and IOL power calculation, furthermore our results support the use of third and fourth generation formulas for IOL power calculation.


Keywords: Anterior chamber depth; Axial length; Intraocular lens power; Cataract; Iran
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