Vitrectomy for traction macular detachment in diabetic retinopathy

  • Petra Meier
  • Peter Wiedemann
Clinical Investigation


•Background: A small number of eyes with proliferative diabetic retinopathy develop massive central fibrovascular membranes characterized by vitreoretinal tractions along the arcades and optic disk and retinal traction lines extending through the macula. The aim of our study was first to present the results of vitrectomy for removal of these central membranes and second to determine the correlation between preoperative parameters and postoperative visual outcome. • Subjects and methods: We treated 28 eyes with severe central fibrovascular diabetic membranes by a modified bimanual en bloc excision technique during vitrectomy. Preoperative examination included general status, visual acuity, slit-lamp investigation, binocular funduscopy, ultrasound investigation and visual evoked potentials (VEP). Further, we analyzed intraoperative complications and postoperative anatomic and functional outcomes. • Results: The retinas of 27 eyes with central traction retinal detachments were reattached by surgery. With a minimum of 6 months' follow-up, the macula remained attached in 24 eyes, while the retinas were completely attached in 22 eyes. Preoperative visual acuity was defective light perception to 0.1; an increase in visual acuity to maximal 0.1 was seen in 50% of the patients postoperatively. Preoperative visual acuity of light perception was associated with no functional improvement. Preoperative ultrasound investigation gave information about the real anatomic situation of the retina, especially if funduscopy was not possible. The other preoperative parameters could not predict correctly the functional outcome of vitrectomy in diabetics with severe central fibrovascular membranes because of the damage of the optic nerve and the retina. • Conclusions: The high rate of anatomical rettachment after vitrectomy in diabetic eyes with severe central fibrovascular membranes is associated with a slight improvement of function; only preoperative visual acuity of hand motions or better was associated with an improvement of function.


Retina Visual Acuity Diabetic Retinopathy Retinal Detachment Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Petra Meier
    • 1
  • Peter Wiedemann
    • 1
  1. 1.University Eye HospitalLeipzigGermany

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