Pars plana vitrectomy is a surgery to remove the vitreous gel from the center of the eye, first performed in 1970. Vitrectomy is the principle step in surgery by a retinal surgeons for retinal detachment, diabetic retinopathy, macular hole, epiretinal membrane, vitreous hemorrhage, dislocated lens, traumatic injuries, and other disorders affecting the back of the eye.


Vitrectomy can be combined with any of the following surgical steps to treat these conditions:


Membrane peel - removal of layers of unhealthy tissue from the retina with minute instruments such as forceps or picks


Fluid-gas exchange placement of gas (e.g., SF6 or C3F8) to hold the retina in place or temporarily seal off holes in the retina. These gases disappear spontaneously once they have accomplished their purpose.


Silicone oil injection - filling of the eye with liquid silicone to hold the retina in place


Laser - laser treatment to seal off holes in the retina or to shrink unhealthy, damaging blood vessels which grow in some diseases such as diabetes


Scleral buckling - placement of a support positioned like a belt around the walls of the eyeball to maintain the retina in a proper, attached position


Lensectomy - removal of the lens in the eye when it is cloudy (cataract) or if it is attached to scar tissue


Recovery after vitrectomy

Patients use eye drops for several weeks or longer to allow the surface of the eye to heal. In some cases heavy lifting is avoided for a few weeks and, if gas is injected, individuals may be required to maintain a face-down position until the gas reabsorbs. Problems such as return of the original condition, bleeding, infection, cataract, retinal vision, or double vision from the surgery may require additional treatment.

Retina Center



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