Common Suture Needles in Ophthalmology
There are many different types of needles available in ophthalmology surgery and they can be grouped into four main types according to the point configuration (i.e.. the shape of the point):
a. cutting
b. reverse cutting
c. taper point
d. spatula
Point of
Cutting Reverse cutting Taper point Spatula
Configurations *triangular with cutting 
  edge at the top

*cuts at tips and edges 
  of the needle

*triangular with cutting
  edge at the bottom

*cuts at tips and edges
  of needle

*round and taper to 
   a point

*cuts at the tip only

*4 or 6 sided with 
  cutting edges on the 

*cuts at tip and sides 
  parallel to the tissue 

Properties *suture canal extends 
  superficial to path of 
  needle tip

*may pull out tissue 
  during needle passage

* suture canal extends 
   deep to path of needle 

* ideal for oculoplastic 
   surgery as the needle
   allows easy passage 
   through epidermis

*accidental perforation 
  may occur with partial 
  thickness suture such 
  as rectus scleral 


*produces the smallest
  hole of all needles

*useful in iris repair

*allow needle to split 
   the tissue plane  and 
   avoid accidental 

*allow the needle to 
   stay in the tissue 

*most commonly used 
  needle  in the anterior 
  segment such as 
  squint operation.

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