Objective: To determine the correlation between clinically observed posterior vitreous detachment (PVD) and both surgical status of the hyaloid and the visual outcome following epiretinal membrane (ERM) surgery. Design: Retrospective chart review. Participants: One hundred and nine eyes of 109 consecutive patients who underwent vitrectomy and repair of idiopathic ERM between January 2006 and September 2008. Methods: Preoperative exam notes from selected charts were reviewed for the presence or absence of a PVD. Operative notes were queried to whether the hyaloid was attached or detached at the onset of surgery. The postoperative visual acuity (VA) was correlated with the intraoperative status of the hyaloid. Preoperative observation of PVD was correlated with the hyaloid status at the time of vitrectomy. Results: Hyaloid status did not impact postoperative VA. Eyes with an attached hyaloid at the onset of surgery had an average postoperative best corrected visual acuity (BCVA) of 20/60 and eyes with PVDs found during surgery had an average BCVA of 20/60+1 (p = 0.66). Of the 109 patients, 72 had a preoperative fundoscopic examination whose results positively correlated with the intraoperative status of the hyaloid. Conclusions: Having an attached hyaloid did not have a significant impact on postoperative visual outcomes in eyes undergoing ERM when compared with outcomes for eyes having a detached hyaloids prior to surgery. Detection of a PVD on preoperative fundoscopic examination was highly sensitive for a "true" PVD, i.e., actual detachment of the posterior hyaloid membrane as confirmed during surgery.
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