ePoster winner: When oil strikes the macula

A study detailing the pros and cons of using silicone oil as a long-term tamponade agent after complex retinal surgery was the winner of the inaugural August Deutman prize for the best e-Poster.

“We know that silicone oil is a widely used tamponade agent in complex retinal surgery, but it should be used with caution due to the potential risk of complications such as macular oedema, ocular hypertension, and emulsification,” said Lourdes Vidal Oliver MD, lead author of the study.

Dr Oliver’s retrospective, single-centre cohort study focused on the incidence of macular oedema and its resolution after silicone oil extraction in patients who underwent macula-off retinal detachment surgery. The study had two main outcomes. Firstly, the incidence of macular oedema together with its resolution after silicone oil extraction. Secondly, in those patients who did not suffer from macular oedema or epiretinal membrane, the team studies whether the silicone oil tamponade could affect the macular thickness.

The mean duration of the tamponade was slightly higher than the recommended period, explained Dr Oliver. “This is because of the characteristics of the patients that we have in our clinic. We are a tertiary referral centre for patients with complex pathology, so our patients may require longer tamponade periods.

The study found a high rate of macular oedema in the cohort of up to 40%, but most patients were able to resolve the issue without further treatment. The study also found that silicone oil caused a thinning of the macula, which improved three months after extraction.

Dr Oliver concluded that silicone oil can be effective in treating macular complications, but caution should be exercised due to potential risks.


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