Macular Pucker

Senior woman in glasses on laptop at library

What is a macular pucker?

The macula is the center-part of the retina that provides the best vision needed for reading and fine detail. Sometimes, scar tissue forms over the macula and causes wrinkling in the macula. These wrinkles cause both distortion and blurriness of the vision. The macula must lie flat against the back of your eye to work properly. When the macula wrinkles or bulges, your central vision is affected.

With a macular pucker, things can look wavy, or you may have trouble seeing details. You might notice a gray or cloudy area in your central vision. You may even have a blank spot in your central vision. Macular pucker will not affect your peripheral (side) vision.

Diagram of the Retina.

Is treatment available?

If a macular pucker is present, our team may recommend a vitrectomy and membrane peel. During this procedure, doctors peel off the scar tissue to relieve the wrinkling.

This often improves the vision and relieves the distortion. The scar tissue can grow back, but this does not happen very often. Statistically, most patients recover half of their vision after this surgery. As with all surgeries, the risks, benefits, and alternatives must always be considered.

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