Giant retinal tears. Surgical techniques and results using perfluorocarbon liquids

Arch Ophthalmol. 1989 May;107(5):761-6. doi: 10.1001/archopht.1989.01070010779046.


Three low-viscosity perfluorocarbon liquids provided an intraoperative tool during vitrectomy to manage giant retinal tears. These clear fluids have a high specific gravity (1.8 to 1.9) and are immiscible with water. In six eyes, the giant tear was less than 180 degrees; in 11 eyes, it was 180 degrees or greater. In all eyes, the tear was unfolded and the retina was flattened while the patient was supine. The perfluorocarbon liquid was aspirated and replaced by air-perfluorocarbon gas mixtures (16 eyes) or silicone oil (one eye) at the end of the operation. The retina was reattached in 16 eyes (94%), with a minimum follow-up period of 6 months. In five eyes (29%), the retina was reattached without scleral buckling. Residual droplets of perfluorocarbon liquid were observed in four patients. These new materials complement present surgical techniques for managing giant retinal tears.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Air
  • Eye
  • Fluorescein Angiography
  • Fluorocarbons / administration & dosage*
  • Fundus Oculi
  • Gases / administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Injections
  • Intraoperative Period
  • Postoperative Period
  • Retina / metabolism
  • Retina / pathology
  • Retinal Perforations / surgery*


  • Fluorocarbons
  • Gases