This retrospective study evaluates the long term efficacy of pars plana vitrectomy on the preservation of vision in complicated chronic uveitis, including endogenous intermediate uveitis and other entities. Combined vitrectomy-lensectomy was performed in 10 eyes with complicated cataracts, and 18 vitrectomies were done without lensectomies. The mean follow up was 45 months. Additional retinal surgery (for example, scleral buckling) was performed in five eyes. Visual acuity improved in 23 eyes (82.8%) following surgery, with 16 eyes (57%) achieving a vision better than 6/24. The main causes for vision less than 6/24 were persistent cystoid macular oedema (three eyes), macular puckers (one eye), retinal vascular obliterations (four eyes), optic atrophy (five eyes), and chorioretinal scars (seven eyes). Postoperative complications were cataract formation (seven eyes), cystoid macular oedema (one eye), and tractional retinal detachments (three eyes). The surgical intervention resulted in a remarkable reduction of the severity of inflammation or frequency of exacerbations, and allowed significant tapering (11 eyes) or withdrawal (11 eyes) of the topical steroids, or oral corticosteroids (10 cases). Pre-existent cystoid macular oedema resolved in three eyes. Pars plana vitrectomy, eventually combined with lensectomy, may visually rehabilitate eyes with chronic uveitis and media opacities, and may reduce the activity of disease postoperatively.
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