Since high corticosteroid levels are important in achieving inhibition of intraocular cellular proliferation, we studied the clearance of an intravitreally injected slowly dissolving corticosteroid in the rabbit eye. Triamcinolone acetonide (0.5 mg) disappeared rapidly in eyes that underwent a combined vitrectomy and lensectomy (average, 6.5 days) and more slowly in eyes that underwent vitrectomy only (average, 16.8 days) compared with unoperated normal rabbit eyes (average, 41 days). The ophthalmoscopic disappearance of the white crystals correlated well with a sensitive colorimetric test for clearance of the corticosteroid. Direct observation is therefore an accurate method of assessing the absorption of the corticosteroid. If used therapeutically, this study suggests that more frequent injections of triamcinolone acetonide would be necessary in eyes that underwent vitrectomy, compared with normal eyes.