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Retina. 2014 Dec;34(12):2317-35. doi: 10.1097/IAE.0000000000000349.

Idiopathic epiretinal membrane.

Author information

1
*Department of Ophthalmology, University Medical Center Groningen, Groningen, the Netherlands; †W. J. Kolff Institute, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, University of Groningen, Groningen, the Netherlands; ‡Tianjin Medical University Eye Hospital, Tianjin Medical University, Tianjin, China; and §Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Groningen, Groningen, the Netherlands.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Idiopathic epiretinal membrane (iERM) is a fibrocellular membrane that proliferates on the inner surface of the retina at the macular area. Membrane contraction is an important sight-threatening event and is due to fibrotic remodeling.

METHODS:

Analysis of the current literature regarding the epidemiology, clinical features, and pathogenesis of iERM and fibrotic tissue contraction.

RESULTS:

Epidemiologic studies report a relationship between iERM prevalence, increasing age, and posterior vitreous detachment. Clinically, iERM progresses through different stages characterized by an increased thickness and wrinkling of the membrane. Pathophysiologically, iERM formation is a fibrotic process in which myofibroblast formation and the deposition of newly formed collagens play key roles. Anomalous posterior vitreous detachment may be a key event initiating the formation of iERM. The age-related accumulation of advanced glycation end products may contribute to anomalous posterior vitreous detachment formation and may also influence the mechanical properties of the iERM.

CONCLUSION:

Remodeling of the extracellular matrix at the vitreoretinal interface by aging and fibrotic changes, plays a significant role in the pathogenesis of iERM. A better understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying this process may eventually lead to the development of effective and nonsurgical approaches to treat and prevent vitreoretinal fibrotic diseases.

PMID:
25360790
DOI:
10.1097/IAE.0000000000000349
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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