The development of pars plana vitrectomy: a personal account

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Conclusion

Vitreous surgery, after 25 years, has become routine. Many have been involved in its development. The early problems are mostly forgotten, the excitement of having overcome another barrier has become rare. Nevertheless, pars plana vitreous surgery has kept a very special appeal. Surgeons are fascinated by the challenge and variation of each single operation, in contrast to the routine of most other ophthalmic procedures. They like the broad range of surgical approaches to the eye. They enjoy the high technology and at the same time the demands on manual skills. And most important of all, help can be offered to patients who only a short time ago had untreatable diseases.

Vitreous surgery is here to stay and is by no means at the end of its development. There will be improvements in instrumentation and surgical techniques. New indications are still found, as the recent extension to macular surgery shows. Mechanical limitations will hopefully be overcome by appropriate combination with medication.