A vitrectomy is a surgery in which the vitreous fluid inside the eye is removed to be better able to repair retinal damage. After the damage is repaired, the fluid is replaced with a saline, silicone, or gas bubble to keep the retina flat while it heals. Depending on the type of bubble used, a follow-up surgery may be necessary in order to remove it. Other types of bubbles are automatically absorbed as the body produces its own aqueous fluid to refill the eye. A vitrectomy is performed as an outpatient procedure, but it requires extreme skill and precision.
At Koch Eye Associates, we are proud to have a highly trained, extensively experienced team of eye health professionals qualified to perform this procedure. To determine whether you are a candidate for a vitrectomy, please schedule a comprehensive exam at our Wakefield, Woonsocket, North Kingstown, Warwick, Providence, or Johnston, RI office.
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Vitrectomies are usually left as a final option to repair retinal damage when less invasive treatments have not provided the desired outcome. Some of the conditions that may benefit from a vitrectomy include:
- Severe eye injury
- Retinal tears or detachments
- Diabetic retinopathy
- Vitreous hemorrhage
- Intravitreal infection
- A wrinkle or hole in the central retina (macula)
- Cataract surgery complications
Koch Eye Associates performs vitrectomy treatments at the St. James Surgery Center in Warwick, RI. Depending on your overall health and the stage of your retinal condition, your vitrectomy may be conducted under local or general anesthesia. You will also be given anesthetic eye drops to numb your eyes prior to the procedure. Depending on your anesthesia, your ophthalmologist may monitor your vitals with an EKG and oxygen and blood pressure sensors.
After your anesthesia has taken full effect, your eye will be cleaned with an antiseptic, and a device will be put into place that will keep you from blinking or moving your eye. Your surgeon will then utilize extremely fine, precise instruments to perform the vitrectomy. First, your vitreous fluid will be removed, and then the retinal damage will be repaired. When the damage is fully addressed, your surgeon will place the silicone, saline, or gas bubble into the eye to hold the retina in place to heal.
Following your procedure, you may be required to remain face-down for several hours, or you may need to stay upright, depending on the type of bubble used. This has to do with the pressure your positioning will place on the bubble (your retina). Different types of chairs and pillows are available to help you maintain the required position. You will receive very detailed aftercare instructions, and we will ensure that you are comfortable with the instructions before you are released to recover at home. It is always very important to attend all of your scheduled follow-up visits after an eye surgery so we can closely monitor your recovery.
Compassion, plus expertise
We understand that the idea of retinal surgery can be intimidating, but you do not have to let a retinal injury impede in your daily life. There are multiple options for treatment, and the team of ophthalmologists at Koch Eye Associates are remarkably skilled and experienced in all the options. There is no need to worry. Contact one of our convenient Rhode Island offices today to come in and experience how our team can provide you with unique, compassionate care.