Objective: To evaluate the anatomic and visual outcomes after a surgical procedure for displacement of thick submacular hemorrhage in patients with age-related macular degeneration.
Design: Retrospective, noncomparative, interventional case series.
Participants: Twenty-nine consecutive eyes of 28 patients with thick submacular hemorrhage secondary to age-related macular degeneration.
Intervention: The procedure consisted of a pars plana vitrectomy with subretinal recombinant tissue plasminogen activator injection (125 micrograms/ml) through a translocation microcannula, followed by fluid-air exchange and postoperative prone positioning [correction].
Main outcome measures: Intraoperative and postoperative surgical complications, preoperative and postoperative best-corrected visual acuities, postoperative fluorescein angiography results, and additional postoperative treatments.
Results: Total subfoveal blood displacement was achieved in 25 eyes, with subtotal displacement in the others. Based on fluorescein angiography results, 8 eyes were eligible for additional postoperative treatments. At 3 months, 17 eyes had gained more than 2 lines of visual acuity, whereas 3 had lost more than 2 lines. The difference between preoperative and 3-month postoperative visual acuity was statistically significant (P = 0.0167). Complications consisted of 2 cases of vitreous hemorrhage that cleared within 4 weeks.
Conclusions: This surgical technique seems useful in displacing thick submacular hemorrhage secondary to age-related macular degeneration, allowing postoperative fluorescein angiography testing and, potentially, subsequent treatments. No significant complication from the procedure was identified. However, further controlled studies will be required to assess its efficacy in the management of this difficult clinical problem.