To determine how quickly laser photocoagulation produces a bond between retina and pigment epithelium, the authors measured the strength of retinal adhesion after making laser burns through intact and recently reattached rabbit retina. After photocoagulation of intact retina, the adhesive force was reduced 50% at 8 hours but increased beyond normal (to approximately 140%) by 24 hours and remained twice normal between 3 days and 4 weeks. Photocoagulation of retina that had just settled after experimental detachment produced similar results, except that the maximum strength of adhesion (reached at 2 weeks) was three times normal. In contrast, retina that reattached spontaneously, without photocoagulation, showed only 10% of normal adhesiveness at 24 hours, and still was only 75% of normal after 4 weeks. These data suggest that laser photocoagulation may be acutely beneficial in the prevention or management of retinal tears and detachments.