New Treatment for Macular holes

Recent approval of Jetrea (Ocriplasmin) to treat symptomatic VMA (Vitreo Macular Adhesion) has opened up a new era in non surgical management of macular holes. Previously only a hospital based surgery was able to reverse the process of macular hole development but now a new drug can be injected into the eye painlessly in the office and within a few weeks the process reverses back to more normal vision levels....  more

FDA Approves ASRS Leader's ArgusŪ II Artificial Retina

On February 14, the FDA approved the Argus II artificial retina developed by ASRS Executive Committee and Board Member Mark S. Humayun, MD, PhD.

This breakthrough technology is the first ever to offer limited vision to patients with late-stage retinitis pigmentosa (RP).

 Second Sight Medical Products (Sylmar, CA) manufactures the Argus II implant, which has 60 electrodes and a tiny camera mounted on eyeglasses to capture images.

 The FDA approved Argus II for adults age 25 years or older with severe to profound RP. About 10,000 to 15,000 of the 100,000 Americans with RP will qualify for Argus II. Up to 4,000 patients a year can be treated with the device.

...  more

Macular degeneration and Aspirin?

Aspirin and Macular degeneration... is there an increase in the wet form of macular degeneration in those patients taking aspirin? The wet form develops quicker than the dry form. It may only be related to the fact that you are more likely to take aspirin if you have medical problems like stroke or heart attacks in the past and these conditions are more commonly associated with wet age related macular degeneration. ...  more

Scleral Buckling


Scleral buckling is performed in-patient at the Vidant Health Systems Hospital in Greenville, NC by the physicians at East Carolina Retina Consultants.  A procedure that literally involves closing retinal tears and breaks using a cryoprobe and then supporting them with a silicone implant called a  “buckle”. Scleral buckling is mostly used to treat rhegmatogenous (rip or tear) cases of retinal detachment.



You will be admitted to the hospital the morning of your surgery and administered general anesthesia. During the procedure, your surgeon will freeze the area surrounding the breaks and tears with a cryoprobe to create scar tissue that will eventually close the tears in the retina.  Then, the buckle, which is typically a piece of silicone sponge or flexible solid silicone, is sewn onto the outer wall of the eyeball (sclera) to create an indentation or “buckle” effect inside the eye.  The buckle is positioned in a way that it pushes in on the retinal break and closes it, preventing fluid to reach the subretinal space and allow subretinal fluid to resolve over the next weeks.  The buckle remains on the eye permanently for support but can be surgically removed if needed (rarely occurrs).


Typically, a scleral buckle procedure is completed as a same-day surgery as an out patient. Patients can go home the same day or have an overnight hospital stay. Post-operatively, you will experience redness or tenderness of the eye, but should be able to resume a normal level of activity within 1 to 2 weeks. Usually there are no specific positioning requirements post-surgery, but your doctor may ask you to sleep with your head in an elevated position for 2 weeks. Your doctor will give you a prescription for pain medication to take only as needed. Over the several weeks following the procedure, your eye will water and your vision may remain blurry, making it more comfortable to wear a patch.



  • In many cases, there is an 90+% chance of re-attaching the retina with one procedure.
  • The retina is permanently supported for the rest of the life of the patient. 



  • Because the procedure is invasive in nature, it carries the following risks: infection, bleeding, high pressure in the eye, retinal tear, cataract formation, glaucoma, redetachment, proliferative vitreoretinopathy, vitreous hemorrhage and drooping of the eyelid, non recovery of the vision, double vision or other problem.
  • Best vision may not occur until months after surgery, in some cases vision may be lost, or multiple operation may be necessary.
  • In very rare instances, scleral buckling can lead to a loss of the eye.
  • The vision will become more near sighted however this is usually correctable with glasses. 
  • On rare occasions the implated material may need to be removed years later due to irritation or double vision.