Vitreomacular traction is a condition in which the vitreous gel has an abnormally strong adhesion to the retina. Over time, the gel tends to pull forward and can cause vessel and retinal distortion causing retinal swelling and decreased vision.
There is a wide spectrum of severity and clinical findings. Some patients have minimal symptoms, while others are bothered by decreased or distorted central vision.
Often early stages are observed for any progression. Vitrectomy with separation of the vitreous is the only treatment option for patients who develop significant visual symptoms.
Depending on the amount of a patient’s vision interferes with their activities of daily living (ADL’s), surgery is generally considered for vision around 20/40 or worse.
Visual recovery after vitrectomy for vitreomacular traction is variable and is difficult to predict. If traction is relieved, the macula can return to more normal anatomy and more normal function. The length of postoperative recovery is also variable and usually depends on the duration of the problem before surgery. Patients generally should expect visual improvement to occur over weeks to months. Normal activities can generally be resumed in 2-4 weeks even if visual recovery is not complete.