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The fellow eye in retinal detachment: findings from the Scottish Retinal Detachment Study


Aim To characterise the predisposing pathology and clinical features in the fellow eyes of patients recruited as part of the Scottish Retinal Detachment Study.

Methods The Scottish Retinal Detachment Study was a 2-year prospectively recruited population-based epidemiology study that sought to recruit all incident cases of primary rhegmatogenous retinal detachment (RRD) in Scotland.

Results A total of 1202 incident cases of primary RRD were recruited in Scotland, over a 2-year period and in 94% (1130 cases) detailed data on the clinical features of fellow eyes with RRD were available. Full-thickness retinal breaks were found in 8.4% (95/1130) of fellow eyes on presentation. Lattice degeneration was present in 14.5% (164/1130) of fellow eyes. Thirteen per cent (148/1130) of affected fellow eyes had a best corrected visual acuity of 6/18 or worse with previous RRD, the second most common cause of poor vision. Overall, 7.3% (88/1202) of cases had RRD in both eyes; 60% of cases with consecutive bilateral RRD presented before the macula were affected.

Conclusions Rhegmatogenous pathology in the fellow eye represents an important threat to vision. Fellow-eye detachments are more common in pseudophakic individuals and those with a more myopic refractive error. Fellow-eye RRD has a greater likelihood of prompt presentation.

  • Epidemology
  • retinal detachment
  • retina
  • epidemiology

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