A macular pucker is caused by scar tissue forming on the eye’s macula – the area near the center of the retina that allows for the sharp central vision required for reading, driving and fixating on fine detail. Conditions affecting the macula result in a decrease in central, fixated vision. Areas in the central vision can become blurry, hazy or distorted (i.e., straight lines look wavy). Blind spots may even appear in the center of the vision field.

Understanding Macular Pucker

Macular pucker and macular holes are similar but unique. Macular holes can occur when the vitreous, or the clear gel that fills the eye, starts to separate from the retina due to the effects of the aging process. As the vitreous pulls on the eye, it can damage the surface of the retina. As the retina starts to repair the damaged area, scar tissue can form over the macula, resulting in a macular pucker.

Macular pucker is also referred to as epiretinal membrane, preretinal membrane, cellophane maculopathy, retina wrinkle, surface wrinkling retinopathy, premacular fibrosis, and internal limiting membrane disease.

Symptoms of macular pucker may be minimal and require no treatment. In fact, in some cases this vision disorder will correct itself. However, when vision problems related to macular pucker become more pronounced, surgical options may become necessary to prevent interference with daily activities.

If you are experiencing any changes in your central vision, please contact California Retina Associates online or by calling one of our San Diego area offices at (619) 425-7755 or (760) 352-7755 to schedule an examination right away.

Macular Pucker Symptoms

Symptoms of macular pucker may be similar to macular degeneration or macular holes. Most commonly they will include the following:

  • Blurry vision
  • Distorted vision
  • Wavy lines
  • Difficulty seeing fine details
  • Difficulties reading fine print
  • A gray area or blind spot in the central vision

Treating Macular Pucker

Macular holes may produce very mild symptoms and, in some cases, no symptoms at all. Some people are able to adjust to the mild changes in vision without it affecting their daily activities. However, when symptoms are present, they can eventually lead to more significant vision loss and should be brought to the immediate attention of one of our San Diego macular pucker authorities.

One of the ways that our team can treat a serious case of a macular pucker is with a vitrectomy. During this procedure, our eye doctors remove the vitreous gel that is pulling on the retina, and replace it with a salt solution. During the vitrectomy, the scar tissue causing the puckering is also removed.

Acting swiftly when vision begins to change is essential. Vitrectomy for macular pucker is typically capable of restoring only about 50% of the vision lost.

Contact Our Macular Pucker Team

The retina specialists at our offices have decades of combined experience helping men and women protect and enhance their vision through targeted treatment of many macular disorders. If you are experiencing any problems with your vision, please call San Diego-area offices at (619) 425-7755 or (760) 352-7755 to schedule an examination and learn how we can help.