Surgically Induced Focal Retinal Detachment Does Not Cause Detectable SD-OCT Retinal Changes in Normal Human Retina.

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Purpose: Induction of focal retinal detachment (RD) for subretinal delivery of stem cells and gene therapy is increasingly common. In order to determine if this procedure has an adverse impact on the retina, we use spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT) to evaluate the pre- and postoperative retinal anatomy of the incidentally detached normal retina surrounding large submacular hemorrhages (SMH) during surgical displacement procedures.

Methods: Retrospective, observational study of human subjects with monocular SMH evaluated before and after surgical displacement using clinical exam, fundus photography, and SD-OCT. Manual measurements of the inner retinal thickness (IRT), outer retinal thickness (ORT), and full retinal thickness (FRT) were made in regions involving the SMH and surrounding normal retina. Comparison of retinal thickness measurements was made using the Wilcoxon signed-rank test.

Results: Seven eyes were included in this study. All eyes successfully underwent surgical displacement of SMH. Visual acuity improved in 6/7 subjects and was unchanged in the remaining subject. Incidental RD of the normal retinal regions surrounding the SMH did not cause any significant change in IRT, ORT, or FRT that was detectable by SD-OCT. In contrast, mean FRT overlying regions with SMH was significantly greater before surgery compared to after displacement of SMH or normal adjacent retina.

Conclusions: Surgically induced focal RD does not cause detectable retinal changes in the incidentally detached normal retina surrounding large SMH. Therefore, surgical induction of focal RD should not be considered to have the same adverse impact on the retina as pathologic RD.





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