Retinal Detachment Repair
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Reasons for Procedure
- Redetachment of the retina—Sometimes, the retina detaches again following surgery. More surgery would be needed. In severe cases, this complication may be irreversible.
- Endophthalmitis—A serious infection can occur inside the eye.
- Proliferative vitreoretinopathy—This condition causes progressive contraction and scarring of the retina after a repair. This may require surgery. In severe cases, this complication may be irreversible.
- Poor general health
- Degree of retinal damage
What to Expect
Prior to Procedure
- Visual acuity—Your vision will be checked using a chart with letters or numbers.
- Slit lamp examination—A special instrument will be used to look at the front of your eye.
- Tonometry—The pressure inside your eye will be measured.
- Dilated retinal exam—Special drops will dilate (enlarge) your pupils. Your retina will then be examined with special lights and lenses.
- B-scan—A special ultrasound instrument will be used to view the inside of the eye.
- Arrange for a ride to and from the procedure.
- Do not eat or drink anything for at least 8 hours before the procedure.
- Aspirin or other anti-inflammatory drugs
- Blood thinners, such as clopidogrel or warfarin
Description of Procedure
How Long Will It Take?
How Much Will It Hurt?
Average Hospital Stay
- Do not remove the patch until instructed to do so. The patch is often removed the next day.
- If your doctor instructs you to keep your head in a certain position, do so as much as possible. Keep the position even when eating, sleeping, and bathing.
- Do not allow your eye to be exposed to running water until allowed by your doctor.
- Avoid strenuous physical activity until allowed by your doctor.
- Your doctor will schedule follow-up appointments to monitor your recovery.
- You can often return to work within 1-2 weeks of surgery if cleared by your doctor.
- Be sure to follow your doctor's instructions.
Call Your Doctor
- Any change in vision
- Signs of infection, including fever and chills
- Redness, swelling, increasing pain, bleeding, or excessive discharge from your eye
- Any new symptoms
American Academy of Ophthalmology http://www.aao.org
American Association of Eye and Ear Hospitals http://www.aaeeh.org
Canadian Association of Optometrists http://www.opto.ca
Ottawa Hospital Eye Institute http://www.ottawahospital.on.ca
Charles Retina Institute website. Available at: http://www.charles-retina.com/.
Digital Journal of Ophthalmology. Harvard University.
Kanski JJ. Clinical Ophthalmology: A Systemic Approach. 4th ed. Butterworth Heinemann; 1999.
The Schepens Eye Research Institute website. Available at: http://www.schepens.harvard.edu/.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD
- Review Date: 06/2013 -
- Update Date: 00/63/2013 -
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
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