We reviewed 30 cases of 360 degrees retinectomy in advanced anterior PVR or PDR with anterior traction. The preoperative visual acuity was light perception or hand motions. In all cases, a 360 degrees retinectomy with silicone oil tamponade was performed. After a mean follow-up of 10 months, the retina was attached in 83% and the visual acuity had improved in 47% of the patients. The mean visual field in patients with a visual acuity of more than counting fingers extended to 29 degrees nasally and 38 degrees temporally. Hypotony was seen in 6 patients, of whom two developed keratopathy. In conclusion, eyes with severe PDR or PVR and a preoperative low visual acuity can be treated successfully with 360 degrees retinectomy when conventional methods have failed. The patients can regain an ambulatory visual acuity and a visual field.