Various instruments have been advocated for surgical removal of epiretinal membranes, including a hooked needle1 or similar barbed instruments. Viscodelamination using a viscoelastic solution has been recommended for separating selected fibrovascular epiretinal membranes in severe diabetic retinopathy.2
A small percentage of epiretinal membranes may be centered on the macula and have no easily identifiable edge to facilitate removal. We used the soft-tipped extrusion needle3 to successfully elevate the edge of the epimacular membrane in two patients in whom conventional instrumentation was potentially hazardous.
Report of Cases.
—A 64-year-old woman presented with a translucent epiretinal membrane in the macula causing secondary retinal distortion and reduction of visual acuity to 20/200 OS. Using a standard three-port pars plana approach, the central formed vitreous was removed with a vitreous cutter. Because of marked adherence of the membrane to the retina without a well-defined edge, the use of
Flynn HW, Brod RD. Use of a Soft-Tipped Extrusion Needle for Epimacular Membrane Peeling. Arch Ophthalmol. 1990;108(1):20-21. doi:10.1001/archopht.1990.01070030026011