Aims Retinal detachment can develop following brachytherapy for uveal melanoma. This complication may result in substantial visual loss and poses a significant therapeutic dilemma due to the required surgical intervention for correction of the detachment. We report the incidence of retinal detachment in eyes treated with brachytherapy for posterior uveal melanoma and the outcome of pars plana vitrectomy in those eyes.
Methods Patients who developed tractional or combined tractional–rhegmatogenous retinal detachment following brachytherapy for posterior uveal melanoma in a single referral centre were retrospectively evaluated. Clinical findings, demographics, and ophthalmic imaging findings were recorded, as well as the manner of treatment and its success.
Results Seven of the 473 posterior uveal melanoma patients (1.48%), who were treated between 2000 and 2011 with brachytherapy, developed tractional or combined tractional–rhegmatogenous retinal detachment. Retinal detachment developed at a mean of 50.1 months (range 3.5–120 months) following brachytherapy. All patients underwent pars plana vitrectomy. Retinas remained attached in each of the cases. In five of seven patients there was substantial improvement in visual acuity following repair of the retinal detachment. No tumour growth or dissemination were observed during the mean follow-up of 18.4 months after vitrectomy (range 10–36 months).
Conclusions Tractional and tractional–rhegmatogenous retinal detachment are rare complications of treated uveal melanoma. Pars plana vitrectomy appears to be an effective and safe procedure in such cases.
- Treatment Surgery
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