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Functional outcome and prognostic factors in 304 eyes managed by retinectomy

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This study was undertaken to relate the anatomic and functional results of patients who underwent retinectomy for complex retinal detachment (RD) to preoperative prognostic variables.


Three hundred and four eyes of 302 patients whose surgery involved retinectomy were included in the analysis. All eyes had established proliferative vitreoretinopathy (PVR grade C). The main outcome measures were (1) postoperative visual acuity of 6/24 or better, (2) status of the retina at the end of follow-up, and (3) incidence of hypotony whilst under review.


PVR was secondary to rhegmatogenous RD in 237 eyes (78%), posterior trauma in 51 eyes (16.8%), tractional RD in vasoproliferative vasculitides in 12 eyes (4%), acute retinal necrosis in 2 eyes and endophthalmitis in 2 eyes. Complete reattachment rate after one operation was 51%, with final complete reattachment success rate of 72%. The visual acuity improved in 138 eyes (45%), remained the same in 73 eyes (24%) and became worse in 89 cases (29%). Postoperative visual acuity of 6/24 or better was significantly associated with preoperative vision, the duration of silicone oil tamponade, silicone oil removal and retinectomy size. There was also some evidence of association between visual outcome and the number of clock hours of retinal detachment. Final retinal attachment was significantly associated with silicone oil removal and preoperative vision, and final hypotony was significantly associated with silicone oil removal. The incidence of sympathetic ophthalmia in our study was 0.09% (one case).


Good functional outcome is possible following retinectomy surgery despite advanced pathology and often multiple surgical procedures. Retinal redetachment as a result of reproliferation and hypotony appear to be the main reasons for anatomical and functional failure. The clinical features we have identified as good indicators for improved final visual acuity such as shorter tamponade duration, removal of silicone oil, smaller retinectomy size, fewer previous operations and better preoperative vision are surrogate markers of less advanced PVR and should prompt retinal surgeons to consider retinectomy at an earlier stage in the process of PVR development. Clinicians should be aware of the small risk of sympathetic ophthalmia from complex retinal surgery.

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Correspondence to Vlassis G. Grigoropoulos.

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The above authors confirm that this manuscript is not related with any proprietary or commercial interests. No sponsoring organizations have been involved and no grants were received from any organization or institution.

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Grigoropoulos, V.G., Benson, S., Bunce, C. et al. Functional outcome and prognostic factors in 304 eyes managed by retinectomy. Graefe's Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol 245, 641–649 (2007).

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