December 18, 2019
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Eyes experience thinning of ganglion cell-inner plexiform layer after epiretinal membrane surgery

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Eyes that underwent epiretinal membrane surgery experienced progressive thinning of the ganglion cell-inner plexiform layer and worsening Humphrey visual field mean deviation at 5 years’ follow-up, according to a study.

“Our 5-year findings that there is progressive thinning of the inner retina after vitrectomy surgery lend further support to a causal association of vitrectomy surgery with risk of glaucoma,” study co-author Stephen J. Kim, MD, told Healio/OSN.

Researchers evaluated functional outcomes in the inner retina in 20 study eyes that underwent epiretinal membrane surgery and 20 fellow control eyes. The 20 patients were examined preoperatively and at 3, 12, 24, 36, 48 and 60 months postoperatively. Spectral domain OCT was used to analyze retinal nerve fiber layer and ganglion cell-inner plexiform layer (GC-IPL).

At every time point, the mean GC-IPL thickness in study eyes was less than the mean GC-IPL of fellow eyes. For all time points, the overall mean GC-IPL thickness was 68.7 µm in study eyes and 77.4 µm in fellow eyes. Progressive thinning of the GC-IPL in study eyes was observed with statistically significant differences between mean GC-IPL thickness in study eyes and fellow eyes at baseline, 3 months and 5 years (P ≤ .05). Additionally, there was statistically significant thinning of the superotemporal GC-IPL in study eyes compared with fellow eyes at 3 months and 60 months (P < .05).

Study eyes experienced a mean deviation on Humphrey visual field testing that was statistically significantly greater (more negative) compared with fellow eyes at 12 months and 24 months but at no other time point. – by Robert Linnehan

Disclosures: The authors report no relevant financial disclosures.