We describe two patients with spontaneous retinal pigment epithelial tears through the fovea who have maintained at least 20/40 visual acuity for 1 year and 3 years following the rip. Both patients had long-standing serous detachments of the retinal pigment epithelium associated with age-related macular degeneration prior to the development of the tear. Each tear was at least five disc areas in size and centered on the fovea. Foveal fixation was documented despite the presumed absence of pigment epithelium. This observation suggests either that there may be remaining or redundant pigment epithelium or that pigment epithelium directly beneath the central macula is not required for maintenance of 20/40 visual acuity.