Understanding Vitreoretinal Surgery

Vitreoretinal surgery is actually a relatively common surgery and while it may not be one of the most major treatments on offer, it can leave you a little concerned, until you understand what is involved, recovery times and more.

Vitreoretinal surgery is when the qualified and experienced eye surgeon removes the vitreous gel which is found in the middle of the eye to help improve your vision. This is often used if you have experienced a retinal detachment or you have blood which has made its way into the gel, in turn affecting your eye sight.

The surgery requires a small instrument that is inserted into eye which cuts the vitreous gel sack and sections out the gel. From here any further treatment can be carried out, whether it’s to treat the retina with a laser or repair a macular hole. When the surgery has been completed, the eye surgeon will use a silicone oil or gas bubble to replace the gel which has been removed and protect the eye.

Your vitreoretinal surgery may be treated as a day case, where you spend the day in hospital only to go home at the end of the day with strict after-care instructions or you may need to spend one night in hospital and go home the following morning, either way it is a quite stay in hospital and recovery is completed in the comfort of your own home, which is always a benefit.

The surgery itself takes around two to three hours. When you are discharged, your surgeon will give you a list of instructions and signs to watch for. It is imperative that you follow these instructions to the letter. This may include sitting or lying in a certain place for a set time to make sure the oil or gas bubble doesn’t move and giving your eye time to heal. During these first times, need to that someone stays with you to give you a helping hand.

There are certain complications and warning signs you must be aware of before you elect to go ahead with vitreoretinal surgery. This includes a decrease in your vision, an increase in the after-surgery pain, increased redness, increased swelling and discharge coming from your eye. Further signs to be aware of includes more floating or new floaters appearing to impair your vision.

The reasons your eye surgeon may choose vitreoretinal surgery is to repair a retina detachment, maybe to repair a retina tear or help reduce the risk of vision loss moving forward. Further they often use this form of surgery to help retain vision in patients suffering from diabetic retinopathy which is an unwelcome side effect of diabetes which impacts your vision.

The good news is that when you choose this form of eye surgery you find that your surgery can help improve or at least restore some of your vision. It is not going to vastly improve your vision, but it can help improve your sight by removing floaters you have experienced or even cut the risk of your eye sight getting worse than it is.

Some of the risks of vitreoretinal surgery you should be made aware of includes retinal detachment, bleeding and infection.