Review Shows Rates of Surgeries After Vitrectomy for Vitreous Opacities

Conjunctive has started to move back to its original position, so surgeon repositions it, during a pars plana vitrectomy. Close-up (Photo by Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
Researchers investigate the rate of return to the operating room after vitrectomy.

Patients who underwent vitrectomy returned to the operating room within 1 year for an ophthalmic surgery other than cataract extraction 3.7% of the time, according to data gleaned from the Intelligent Research in Sight (IRIS) Registry. That surgery was retinal detachment repair in 2.6% of cases, a study published in Ophthalmology Retina shows.

The researchers sought to assess the rate of return to the operating room for additional surgery after the initial vitrectomy, and the nature of these procedures in a broader population of patients than had been included in previous studies.

They analyzed data from the IRIS Registry of adult patients with vitreous opacities from 2013 through June 30, 2017. They also analyzed their respective follow-up data for the subsequent 1 year, and the nature and timing of additional procedures within that year.

The study identified 17,615 eyes that underwent vitrectomy surgery linked exclusively to a vitreous opacity code. In total, 2830 (16.1%) underwent a surgical procedure within 1 year, including 2187 (12.4%) returned for a cataract extraction only, and 643 (3.7%) who underwent a secondary ophthalmic surgery. 

The most commonly found codes for the second procedure, excluding cataract surgery, were 67113 (vitrectomy/complex retinal detachment repair) for 242 eyes (1.4%), 67108 (vitrectomy/retinal detachment repair) for 215 eyes (1.2%), 67040 (vitrectomy/ panretinal laser) for 112 eyes (0.6%), 67041 (vitrectomy/membrane stripping) for 57 eyes (0.3%), 67042 (vitrectomy/macular hole repair) for 41 eyes (0.2%), and 67,039 (vitrectomy/focal laser) for 38 eyes (0.2%).

Limitations of the study include possible exclusion or inappropriate inclusion of cases miscoded by the treating physicians and that a causative link between the second surgery and the initial vitrectomy for vitreous opacities could not be established.

“Vitrectomy surgery as a therapy for vitreous opacities is not rare among IRIS Registry users and may be associated commonly with patient satisfaction, but the risk and the possibility of additional surgery should be considered carefully and discussed with patients,” the study says.


Rubino SM, Parke DW III, Lum F. Return to the operating room after vitrectomy for vitreous opacities: intelligent research in sight registry analysis. Ophthalmol Retina. Published online July 17, 2020. doi:10.1016/j.oret.2020.07.015