Pars Plana Vitrectomy for Diabetic Macular Edema: A Systematic Review, Meta-Analysis, and Synthesis of Safety Literature

Timothy L Jackson, Elena Nicod, Aris Angelis, Federico Grimaccia, Edward Pringle, Panos Kanavos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Citations (Scopus)
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PURPOSE: To assess the risk and benefit of pars plana vitrectomy for diabetic macular edema.

METHODS: The authors conducted a systematic literature review using PubMed, EMBASE, Web of Science, and Cochrane Central Database of Controlled Trials until September 2014. The population was patients with diabetic macular edema, intervention vitrectomy, comparator macular laser or observation, and efficacy outcome visual acuity and central retinal thickness. Safety outcomes were intraoperative and postoperative surgical complications. The efficacy meta-analysis included only randomized controlled trials. The safety analysis included prospective, retrospective, controlled, and uncontrolled studies.

RESULTS: Five studies were eligible for the efficacy meta-analysis (n = 127 eyes) and 40 for the safety analysis (n = 1,562 eyes). Combining follow-up intervals from 6 to 12 months, the meta-analysis found a nonsignificant 2 letter visual acuity difference favoring vitrectomy, and a significant 102 μm greater reduction in central retinal thickness favoring vitrectomy, but a post hoc subgroup analysis found that a 6-month central retinal thickness benefit reversed by 12 months. The most frequent complications were retinal break (7.1%), elevated intraocular pressure (5.2%), epiretinal membrane (3.3%), and vitreous hemorrhage (2.4%). Cataract developed in 68.6% of 121 phakic eyes.

CONCLUSION: Vitrectomy produces structural and functional improvements in select eyes with diabetic macular edema, but the visual gains are not significantly better than with laser or observation. No major safety concerns were identified.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sept 2016


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