Vitreous hemorrhage - Causes, diagnosis, and management

Indian J Ophthalmol. 2023 Jan;71(1):28-38. doi: 10.4103/ijo.IJO_928_22.


Vitreous hemorrhage is associated with a myriad of conditions such as proliferative diabetic retinopathy, proliferative retinopathy following vascular occlusion and vasculitis, trauma, retinal breaks, and posterior vitreous detachment without retinal break. Multiple pathological mechanisms are associated with development of vitreous hemorrhage such as disruption of abnormal vessels, normal vessels, and extension of blood from an adjacent source. The diagnosis of vitreous hemorrhage requires a thorough history taking and clinical examination including investigations such as ultra-sonography, which help decide the appropriate time for intervention. The prognosis of vitreous hemorrhage depends on the underlying cause. Treatment options include observation, laser photo-coagulation, cryotherapy, intravitreal injections of anti-vascular endothelial growth factor, and surgery. Pars plana vitrectomy remains the cornerstone of management. Complications of vitreous hemorrhage include glaucoma (ghost cell glaucoma, hemosiderotic glaucoma), proliferative vitreoretinopathy, and hemosiderosis bulbi.

Keywords: Diabetic retinopathy; Terson's syndrome; laser photo-coagulation; proliferative retinopathy; valsalva retinopathy; vascular occlusion; vitrectomy; vitreous hemorrhage.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Diabetic Retinopathy* / complications
  • Diabetic Retinopathy* / diagnosis
  • Diabetic Retinopathy* / therapy
  • Glaucoma* / surgery
  • Humans
  • Retinal Perforations* / surgery
  • Vitrectomy / adverse effects
  • Vitreoretinopathy, Proliferative* / surgery
  • Vitreous Detachment* / complications
  • Vitreous Hemorrhage / diagnosis
  • Vitreous Hemorrhage / etiology
  • Vitreous Hemorrhage / therapy