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Acta Ophthalmol. 2009 Jun;87(4):419-23. doi: 10.1111/j.1755-3768.2008.01264.x. Epub 2009 Feb 6.

Temporal changes in retinal thickness after removal of the epiretinal membrane.

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1
Department of Ophthalmology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Yamanashi, Shimokato 1,110, Chuo City, Yamanashi, Japan.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

We aimed to study the temporal aspects of the postoperative reduction of retinal thickness in eyes with epiretinal membrane after vitrectomy with peeling of the epiretinal membrane and internal limiting membrane.

METHODS:

In a retrospective study performed as a non-comparative, interventional case series, 16 eyes from 15 patients with idiopathic epiretinal membrane who underwent vitrectomy and removal of the epiretinal membrane were followed up using optical coherence tomography measurements. Retinal thickness in the macular area was assessed by the foveal thickness and macular volume in a circle 6 mm in diameter.

RESULTS:

Scattergrams of the foveal thickness and macular volume were best fitted with exponential curves. The average time constants of the exponential curve for foveal thickness and macular volume changes were 31 days (range 4-109 days) and 36 days (range 5-100 days), respectively. The average expected final values for foveal thickness and macular volume were 334 microm (range 206-408 microm) and 7.53 mm(3) (range 6.57-8.66 mm(3)), respectively, which were significantly greater than those in normal controls (p < 0.0001, t-test).

CONCLUSIONS:

Retinal thickness decreases rapidly immediately after surgical removal of the epiretinal membrane and the reduction rate gradually slows thereafter. Approximation of the exponential curve provides an estimation of final retinal thickness after surgical removal of the epiretinal membrane; final thickness is expected to be greater than in normal eyes.

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