The concept of heavy tamponades-chances and limitations

Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 2008 Sep;246(9):1217-24. doi: 10.1007/s00417-008-0861-0. Epub 2008 Jun 11.


Background: Proliferative vitreoretinopathy in the inferior retina remains clinically challenging. Heavier than water intraocular tamponades have been developed to improve inferior tamponading properties. In addition to inferior PVR, there seem to be other applications such as persistent macular holes or PVR in trauma eyes.

Materials and methods: Review of the literature on clinical application of heavy tamponades. The review also discusses the theoretical background of heavy tamponades and possible future developments.

Results: The parameters of an optimal intraocular tamponade are defined, and the influences of the specific gravity, buoyancy, interfacial tension, and viscosity are discussed. Perfluorocarbon liquids and partially fluorinated alkanes were associated with tamponade emulsification, intraocular inflammation, and rise in intraocular pressure that was less prominent in admixtures of these substances with silicone oil (heavy silicone oils). Two recently developed heavy silicone oil tamponades, Oxane HD and Densiron 68, are well-tolerated and have entered clinical practice. The side effects are associated with the chemical properties of the tamponading agent, and seem comparable to the ones seen with conventional silicone oil.

Conclusion: Heavy silicone oil tamponade improves inferior tamponade, and may be considered a new generation of intraocular tamponades.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Fluorocarbons / chemistry
  • Fluorocarbons / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Retinal Diseases / therapy*
  • Silicone Oils / chemistry
  • Silicone Oils / therapeutic use*
  • Specific Gravity
  • Surface Tension
  • Viscosity


  • Fluorocarbons
  • Silicone Oils
  • densiron