Treatment of postvitrectomy fibrin pupillary block with tissue plasminogen activator

Am J Ophthalmol. 1989 Aug 15;108(2):170-5. doi: 10.1016/0002-9394(89)90013-5.


We injected 25 micrograms of recombinant tissue plasminogen activator into the anterior chamber or the vitreous cavity in seven aphakic patients for pupillary block caused by a complete fibrin pupillary membrane that formed after vitrectomy with fluid-gas exchange. Progressive fibrin deposition resulted in pupillary block by three days after vitrectomy surgery in six patients, and seven days after vitrectomy in one patient. The pupillary block was associated with increased intraocular pressure in six patients. Tissue plasminogen activator was injected via the corneoscleral limbus in five patients and via the pars plana in two patients. In all patients, injection of tissue plasminogen activator resulted in complete fibrinolysis of the fibrin pupillary membrane within four hours, associated with a deepening of the anterior chamber. In the six patients with increased intraocular pressure at the time of tissue plasminogen activator injection, dissolution of the fibrin membrane was associated with a decrease in pressure. In all patients, intraocular pressure had returned to normal by three days after the injection. No complications were associated with the injection.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anterior Chamber / metabolism
  • Female
  • Fibrin / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Insufflation
  • Intraocular Pressure
  • Iris Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Iris Diseases / etiology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Recombinant Proteins / therapeutic use
  • Retinal Detachment / surgery
  • Tissue Plasminogen Activator / therapeutic use*
  • Vitrectomy / adverse effects*
  • Vitreous Body
  • Vitreous Hemorrhage / surgery


  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Fibrin
  • Tissue Plasminogen Activator