What is an Epiretinal Membrane?

Definition: Epiretinal membrane is a layer on the surface of the retina which causes wrinkling of the retina. It is also called 'macular pucker' or 'cellophane maculopathy'.

Symptoms: Patients will experience distortion of images, bending of straight lines, 

double vision, a shadow next to the words when reading, and/or blurred vision.

Treatment:  Epiretinal membranes can be removed surgically. This involves a 'vitrectomy' (removing the vitreous gel) and peeling the membrane with or without a 'cataract' operation.  This can be performed as a day case procedure with the patient either awake or asleep.

Outcome: The operation usually improves the distortion, double vision, and reading. Sharpness in vision can also improve, but it typically does not improve to a level when the eye did not have the condition. The condition can also recur in rare cases. 

The condition is not a blinding condition and therefore urgent treatment is not necessarily. However, epiretinal membranes typically progresses and stabilizes.

Please consult your LEC specialist to discuss the best options for you.