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Vitrectomy vrs Membrane Peel = Difference?
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Vitrectomy vrs Membrane Peel = Difference?

Dear Doctors:

What is the difference between a Vitrectomy and a Membrane Peel?  My doctor left the bag of the eye in tact after the operation.  Is this the difference between a Vitrectomy and a Membrane Peel?  If so when I have a Capsulotomy next month will this bag pull on my eye during the laser treatment and cause a possible detachment?

Thank you
hsum4
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Dear hsum4,

I am not certain of what you discuss.  From your description, I think the bag you are referring to is the posterior capsule or the back of the lens capsule which is left in place after cataract surgery.  This often gets cloudy and requires a 5 minute laser procedure to create a opening to enable light to enter the eye.  Retinal detachment is a possibility but not common following this procedure.  I would advise that you ask your eyeMD the questions posed here as they are familiar with the specifics of all of the conditions of your eye.  I hope this helped you.

Dr. Feldman

Sandy T. Feldman, M.D., M.S.
ClearView Eye and Laser Medical Center
San Diego, California
6 Comments
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Thank you for your reply.  I will speak with my eye doctor regarding this next month.

hsum4
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Dear Doctor Feldman:

What is the difference between a Vitrectomy and a membrane peel?

Thank you
hsum4
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vitrectomy: removal of vitreous gel
membrane peel: removal of epiretinal membrane

the two procedures above usually require a trip to the O.R. and is often done by a vitreoretinal specialist. YAG capsulotomies can usually be done in office is usually performed by refractive surgeons.
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Addendum to berrywoo's post:  An epiretinal membrane is a layer of scar tissue on the macula.  It can sometimes cause distorted vision and loss of acuity.  The procedure to remove the membrane is sometimes called a "membrane peel."  It can be done without doing a vitrectomy, but this can result in lots of troublesome floaters.  So a vitrectomy is usually done, too.
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Dear Response Population:

Thank you for defining the difference between a membrane peel and vitrectomy.

hsum4
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