Unexplained Vision Loss Associated With Intraocular Silicone Oil Tamponade in Rhegmatogenous Retinal Detachment Repair

Parastou Pakravan, Abdulla Shaheen, Veshesh Patel, Maria F. Villalba, Bernard Dib, James Lai, Landon Rohowetz, Viet Chau, Nimesh A. Patel, Jonathan H. Tzu, Angeline L. Wang, Sandra Alhoyek, Nathan Scott, Wasim A. Samara, Lediana Goduni, Jesse J. Jung, Jonathan F. Russell, Dimosthenis Mantopoulos, Amir R. Hajrasouliha, Brian T. SavoieLuis J. Haddock, Audina M. Berrocal, Jayanth Sridhar, Matthew R. West, Nicolas A. Yannuzzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To evaluate the visual outcomes with unexplained vision loss during or after silicone oil (SO) tamponade. Methods: This multicenter retrospective case series comprised patients with unexplained vision loss associated with SO tamponade or its removal. Eyes with other clear secondary identifiable causes of vision loss were excluded. Results: Twenty-nine eyes of 28 patients (64% male) were identified. The mean age was 50 ± 13 years (range, 13-78 years). The mean duration of SO tamponade was 148 ± 38 days. Eighteen eyes (62%) developed unexplained vision loss while under SO; 11 (38%) had vision loss after SO removal. The most common optical coherence tomography (OCT) finding was ganglion cell layer (GCL) thinning (55%). Eyes with vision loss after SO removal had a mean logMAR best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) of 0.6 ± 0.7 (Snellen 20/85) before SO tamponade and 1.2 ± 0.4 (20/340) before SO removal. By the last follow-up after SO removal, the BCVA had improved to 1.1 ± 0.4 (20/235). In eyes with vision loss after SO removal, the BCVA before SO removal was 0.7 ± 0.7 (20/104), which deteriorated to 1.4 ± 0.4 (20/458) 1 month after SO removal. By the last follow-up, the BCVA had improved to 1.0 ± 0.5 (20/219). Conclusions: Unexplained vision loss can occur during SO tamponade or after SO removal. Vision loss was associated with 1000-centistoke and 5000-centistoke oil and occurred in macula-off and macula-on retinal detachments. The duration of tamponade was 3 months or longer in the majority of eyes. Most eyes had GCL thinning on OCT. Gradual visual recovery can occur yet is often incomplete.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)299-304
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of VitreoRetinal Diseases
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 2023


  • intraocular silicone oil tamponade
  • rhegmatogenous retinal detachment repair
  • unexplained vision loss

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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