Vitrectomy surgery is a commonly performed surgery by a retina specialist. In most cases it is performed under local anesthesia with light sedation but in some cases it can be done under general anesthesia. It is one of the most commonly performed surgeries performed by retina specialists to treat a number of retina problems. The surgery is done with the help of a vitrectomy machine and high power microscope in the operating room.
After the eye is anesthetized and sterilized, three (3) small incisions are made within the white part of the eye when the patient is lying on his/her back. Small instruments are introduced into the eye to perform different tasks like removing the vitreous gel, applying laser treatment and excision of connective tissue. These instruments are small and usually the incisions are self sealing.
The surgery can take anywhere from 30 minutes to a few hours depending on the complexity of the problem. Frequent reasons to perform vitrectomy procedure include detachment of the retina, diabetic retinopathy, macular hole repair, and epiretinal membrane excision.
Patients typically go home on the same day of surgery with the eye patched overnight. Topical antibiotic and anti-inflammatory eye drops are started the day after surgery and are continued for a few weeks postoperatively to help within the healing process.