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The Benefits of Having Macular Pucker Surgery

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A macular pucker is an eye condition that usually affects people over 50. Symptoms of a macular pucker can include blurriness, distorted vision, straight lines appearing wavy, and problems seeing fine detail.

Fortunately, in many cases, a macular pucker doesn’t result in vision problems or require treatment or surgery. But if your vision is impaired and your vision impairment becomes severe, macular pucker surgery, also called a vitrectomy, can help restore most of your lost vision and prevent it from deteriorating further.

Our experts at University Retina put together the following information to help you understand this condition and its treatment.

What is a macular pucker?

The macula is a small part of your eye that lies flat against the retina, the light-sensitive area in the back of your eye. The macula is responsible for sharp vision and details.

When the retina gets damaged, it forms scar tissue as the injury heals. One way the retina can develop a tear or micro-injury is when the vitreous, which is the gel-like substance that fills about 80% of your eye and is responsible for its roundness, shrinks. Vitreous shrinkage is a normal part of aging. When it shrinks, it can pull away from the retinal surface and damage it.

If the scar forms on or near the macula, it can cause a wrinkle or pucker that can impair your vision. If it forms elsewhere on the retina, it usually doesn’t cause vision problems. In some cases, the vision issues that the macular pucker causes are minor. But these issues can worsen over the years.

Benefits of macular pucker surgery

If the vision problems from a macular pucker start to interfere with your daily activities like reading and driving, you may consider surgery. Eyedrops, supplements, or medication can’t help macular pucker-related vision loss.

During macular pucker surgery, we remove the vitreous and replace it with a salt solution. The next step in this surgery is a membrane peel, where your eye doctor removes the scar tissue. Post-surgery, you need to wear an eye patch to protect your eye and use antibiotic drops to ensure that it does not get infected or inflamed.

The full benefits of the surgery will be apparent after about three months, but you’ll notice gradual improvement before that time. As with most surgical procedures, there are a few risks. The most common risk with vitrectomy is that you may develop cataracts more quickly.

For more information about macular pucker symptoms and surgery, call us at University Retina or visit one of our four locations today. You can also book an appointment online.

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