Retinal detachment still a common problem

November 1, 2007

Retinal detachment is still the most common serious complication of macular surgery.

Retinal detachment is still the most common serious complication of macular surgery, according to a report published in the October issue of the British Journal of Ophthalmology.

Alexandre Guillaubey and colleagues from University Hospital Dijon and University Hospital Nancy, France conducted a retrospective, non-randomized study of 634 macular surgery procedures (idiopathic macular hole surgery [IMH] n=272; epiretinal membrane surgery [ERM] n=362).

No retinal detachment was seen in patients presenting with an intraoperative or preoperative successfully treated retinal break. There was a higher rate of retinal detachment occurring after IMH surgery than after ERM surgery (6.6% versus 2.5%, p=0.02) and furthermore, the rate of retinal detachment was higher in patients presenting with stage 2 and 3 IMH than with stage 4 IMH.

The results demonstrate that retinal detachment is still a common complication following macular surgery and that surgical detachment of the posterior vitreous face and associated peripheral retina anomaly appear to increase the rate of this complication. The authors of this study suggest that careful examination of the peripheral retina is essential in helping to prevent this complication.