When Is Vitrectomy Necessary? The Procedure Benefits These Conditions

Submitted by Elman Retina Group on November 19, 2022
Vitrectomy in Baltimore

Behind the lens of the eye is clear gelatinous fluid called vitreous humor. The vitreous humor has a number of functions including maintaining the shape of the eye, helping with vision clarity and absorbing shocks to the head or the eye. Certain conditions may require that the vitreous be surgically removed in a procedure called vitrectomy.

Elman Retina Group’s premier ophthalmologists Dr. Michael Elman, Dr. David Dao and Dr. Sidney “Sid” Schechet are skilled at providing vitrectomy care. Below our doctors discuss when vitrectomy is necessary and what conditions the procedure benefits.

What Is Vitrectomy?

Dr. Elman, Dr. Dao and Dr. Schechet perform vitrectomy as an outpatient procedure. During the procedure, the skilled eye surgeon makes an incision in the white part of the eye to access its inner cavity. Then the gelatinous fluid is carefully removed. After that, any other necessary surgical procedure could be performed depending on the disease. The surgeon then inserts a gas bubble or sterile saline solution into the eye to ensure the retina remains in its correct position. Eventually, the eye’s natural fluids replace the bubble or solution.

When Is Vitrectomy Necessary?

There are various conditions that may require vitrectomy. These conditions generally require that the vitreous gel be removed to provide better access to the retina. Once the gelatinous fluid is removed, the surgeon is able to perform the necessary repair.

Vitrectomy Benefits These Conditions

There are a number of conditions that vitrectomy can benefit. Many of the conditions involve the retina. Here are some of the most common:

  • Retinal detachment – a serious condition where the retinal tissue completely disconnects from the back of the eye, causing instant loss of vision.
  • Vitreous hemorrhage – bleeding into the vitreous.
  • Macular hole – when a full-thickness hole develops in the macula. The macula is located in the center of the retina and provides for sharp and central vision.
  • Diabetic retinopathy – a condition that affects blood vessels in the retina and can cause severe retinal diseases such as tractional retinal detachment, vitreous hemorrhage, diabetic macular edema and others. Untreated, it can lead to vision loss and even cause blindness.
  • Epiretinal membrane – also called a “macular pucker,” this complication affects the macula and central vision.

Other eye conditions may require vitrectomy like a traumatic eye injury or an infection. The only way to know if vitrectomy is necessary is through a comprehensive eye exam.

Schedule Your Eye Exam Today

Vitrectomy is a safe procedure when performed by an experienced retinal specialist like the doctors at Elman Retina Group. To find out whether vitrectomy is right for you, call or email us today to schedule a comprehensive eye exam.