The Retina Reference

Central Retinal Vein Occlusion After Laser Chorioretinal Venous Anastomosis

You should look at the Normal Retina photo first for comparison. This patient had central retinal vein occlusions in both eyes. The right eye was affected first, and is shown at bottom right. When this occurred, no treatments were attempted, and the eye was left with counting fingers vision and a macular scar. Whne the left eye was affected, a treatment called laser anastomosis was attempted. In this technique, several intense laser burns are made to stimulate growth of a shunt between the retinal venous blood supply and the choroidal venous blood supply. The choroid is beneath the retina and separated from it by a thin membrane. Fortunately, in this case, two shunts worked, providing a way for the retinal blood to leave the eye, and leaving the eye with 20/30 vision.This technique has not been widely accepted because the success rate is relatively low, and the rate of complications, such as excessive scar tissue growth over the surface of the retina, has been judged too high. Further work is being done to reduce the side effects and enhance the success rate.