In a prospective study performed between June 1992 and March 1994 19 eyes of 19 patients with dense fibrinous pupillary membranes following cataract surgery were treated with intracameral injections of 25 micrograms recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (r-tPA). Injections were performed between the second and twenty-third postoperative day (mean 5.6 +/- 6.9 days). Complete fibrinolysis within one to 4 hours (mean: 3.3 +/- 0.89 hours) was observed in 18 (94.7%) eyes. In one (5.3%) eye fibrinolysis was incomplete despite a second injection. In 2 (10.5%) eyes. No recurrence of a distinct fibrinous membrane was noted which then cleared spontaneously with topical treatment. A small hyphema developed in 2 (10.5%) eyes and intraocular pressure exceeded 25 mmHg in 2 (10.5%) eyes. No increase of keratopathy nor any toxic intraocular side effect of 25 micrograms intracameral r-tPA was observed throughout the study. The intracameral injection of r-tPA clinically proved to safely accelerate the resorption of dense fibrinous membranes following cataract surgery and thus enhance visual recovery minimizing subsequent complications and systemic or subconjunctival anti-inflammatory treatment.