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Guenther Weigert, Robert A Blum, Stefan Sacu, Michael Georgopoulos, Stefan Palkovits, Sandra Rezar, Katharina Eibenberger, Leopold Schmetterer, Ursula Schmidt-Erfurth, Macula Study Group Vienna; The influence of retinal oxygenation on the clinical outcomes in eyes with epiretinal membrane after successful vitrectomy. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2014;55(13):2320.
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In the present study patients with epiretinal membrane underwent 23G vitrectomy and ICG membrane peeling. Little information is available about the effects of this treatment on retinal oxygenation. Hence, we set out to investigate the effects of vitrectomy on retinal oxygenation in patients with epiretinal membrane.
In this unmasked, prospective study, patients with macular edema as a result of epiretinal membrane scheduled to undergo vitrectomy without endotamponade, were included. The main outcome measure was oxygenation of the retinal vessels. The measurement of oxygenation in retinal vessels and retinal vessel diameters was performed with the Retinal Vessel Analyzer at baseline, then at day 1, day 7, week 4, week 12, and month 6 after surgery. At each follow-up visit, a high-definition OCT examination and ETDRS visual acuity were also performed.
Retinal venous diameter increased significantly at the first follow-up examination. There was no significant change in oxygen saturation in retinal arteries. After an increase at day 1, retinal oxygen saturation in retinal veins decreased significantly at the 6 months follow-up visit versus baseline. Visual acuity tended to increase after 6 months and central retinal thickness was decreased after 6 months as expected.
Vitrectomy for epiretinal membrane may show beneficial short-term effects on retinal oxygenation. In eyes with macular edema due to other pathologies, vitrectomy may be performed as an additional treatment modality. Further studies evaluating whether these effects are associated with changes in long-term visual acuity are warranted.
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