The efficacy of silicone oil for complicated retinal detachments in the pediatric population

Arch Ophthalmol. 1994 Jun;112(6):773-7. doi: 10.1001/archopht.1994.01090180071037.


Objective: To evaluate the efficacy of silicone oil as an intraocular tamponade for complicated retinal detachments in the pediatric population.

Design: Case series.

Setting: Referral practice at a major university hospital eye center.

Patients: Consecutive referred sample of 48 cases of complicated retinal detachments in children 16 years old or younger. Forty-two percent of the patients had traumatic injuries, and 35 of the eyes had undergone at least one previous retinal surgery. The minimum follow-up was 6 months, with an average follow-up of 23 months.

Interventions: Pars plana vitrectomy, silicone oil injection, and advanced vitreoretinal surgical techniques.

Main outcome measures: Successful repair of complicated retinal detachment, improved visual acuity post-operatively, and frequency of complications.

Results: The postoperative visual acuity at the last follow-up examination was counting fingers or better in eight (17%) of the 48 cases, and only two eyes saw 20/200 or better. In the 46 eyes in which the retinal status could be determined, 16 retinas (35%) were successfully reattached at last follow-up. Significant complications included corneal opacification (62%) and hypotony (58%). Postoperative glaucoma was not a problem.

Conclusions: In the pediatric population with complicated retinal detachments, silicone oil used for intraocular tamponade has disappointing results due to a low rate of sustained retinal reattachment, poor visual rehabilitation, and a high complication rate.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Postoperative Complications / etiology
  • Prognosis
  • Reoperation
  • Retinal Detachment / surgery*
  • Silicone Oils* / adverse effects
  • Visual Acuity


  • Silicone Oils