Background: Heavier than water intraocular tamponades have several theoretical advantages over conventional tamponades, especially in the treatment of complicated retinal detachments and proliferative viteroretinopathy of the lower fundus periphery. However, initial clinical series of various heavy tamponades have reported significant complication rates. Therefore, heavy tamponades have not found widespread acceptance. Three recently developed heavy silicone oil tamponades, Oxane HD, Densiron 68, and HWS 46-3000, are much better tolerated and presently seem to enter routine clinical practice.
Materials and methods: Literature review of 21 publications on the clinical application of 9 different heavy tamponades (fluorosilicone, C10F18, F6H8, OL62HV, Oxane HD, O62, F6H8-silicone oil mixture, Densiron 68, and HWS 46-3000).
Results: The first generation (fluorinated silicone and perfluorocarbon liquids) and second generation (partially fluorinated alkanes) of heavy tamponades were associated with relatively high complication rates, for example, tamponade emulsification, intraocular inflammation, and rise in intraocular pressure. The complication spectrum of the new generation of heavy silicone oils (Oxane HD, Densiron 68, and HWS 46-3000) seems to be comparable to conventional silicone oil tamponades while providing better support for the inferior retina and the posterior pole.
Conclusion: The recently developed heavy silicone oil tamponades are safe and effective tools for the use of complicated retinal detachments of the inferior fundus.