Purpose: To determine the effectiveness of macular translocation with retinotomy and retinal rotation in exudative age-related macular degeneration.
Methods: After written informed consent was obtained, 20 patients underwent macular translocation. We created a 180-degree retinotomy superior, inferior, and temporal to the macula near the equator. The hinged retinal flap was rotated superiorly or inferiorly to place the center of the fovea over an area of healthy retinal pigment epithelium. The retina was flattened under silicone oil and laser photocoagulation was placed.
Results: The fovea was moved 425 to 1,700 microm (965+/-262 microm) superiorly or inferiorly. Follow-up time was 2 to 12 months (median 8 months). Complications included macular pucker (3 eyes), subfoveal hemorrhage (2 eyes), macular hole (1 eye), and progression of cataract in phakic eyes (3 eyes). Thirteen of 20 eyes showed various degrees of proliferative vitreoretinopathy with epiretinal membrane formation over the inferior peripheral retina with the inferior retinal detachment stabilized by the silicone oil. One eye progressed to phthisis bulbi. Initial visual acuity ranged from 20/80 to 20/800 (median 20/150) and final visual acuity ranged from light perception to 20/200 (median 20/1000).
Conclusion: The fovea can be moved up to 1,700 microm with retinotomy and retinal rotation; however, there is a high rate of complications. Proliferative vitreoretinopathy is the major complication of this technique and is probably related to the extensive retinotomy and subretinal irrigation inherent in the technique. Other techniques such as scleral shortening may have fewer complications.