How PVR Can Develop
The retina is the light-sensitive layer of tissue lining the back of the eye. A detached retina is when the retina becomes separated from the underlying support tissue at the back of the eye. Retinal reattachment surgery has about a 90% success rate. In 5% to 10% of cases, however, patients develop scar tissue that interrupts normal healing after surgery causing redetachment of the retina. The scar tissue develops in the vitreous cavity, which is the clear gel-like substance that occupies the space behind the lens and in front of the retina at the back of the eye and stiffens the retina, and results in the re-detachment of the retina.
PVR can also occur after a serious eye injury and can develop days or weeks after the initial event. It is thought that the body’s inflammatory response to trauma might prevent full healing of the eye, causing the retina to remain detached.
Risk Factors for PVR
Patients are more susceptible to PVR if they have severe nearsightedness (also known as myopia), diabetes, complicated cataract surgery, a large retina tear, or suffer a retinal detachment that is not treated quickly. Other risk factors include: receiving a blow to the eye, or having a retinal detachment that involves the macula, which is the part of the eye that enables us to see straight ahead. PVR is also more likely in smokers and former smokers.