Vitrectomy Surgery Information

The Surgery

Vitrectomy surgery is a general procedure used to treat a variety of eye conditions. These conditions may include natural degeneration of the vitreous humor, macular holes, macular pucker, vitreous bleeding, retinal detachment, or in some cases, injury. Although the reason for undergoing Vitrectomy surgery may vary from person to person, the procedure is largely universal.

The surgery involves the removal of the vitreous humor - a gel-like matrix comprising the bulk of the eyeball - through three small incisions. Since the vitreous humor provides the eyeball with structure, it must be replaced with a similar substance in order to prevent collapse. Where surgeries vary however, is in the mode surgeons employ to facilitate recovery.

One common surgical practice is the insertion of a gas bubble into the vitreous cavity at the end of the operation. The gas bubble acts as a surface to allow healing of the retina or macula, which is possible only if the person maintains the prescribed face-down position.

Healing Position

In order to understand the purpose for this face down position, one must first note the location of the macula on the inner rear portion of the eyeball. Because the gas bubble will always float to the highest region within the eye, the only way to ensure its contact with the macula is to orient the head in the face down position.

The length of time that one remains in the face-down position is dependent on numerous factors related to both the nature of the disorder and the specifics of the surgery. This will be specified by the surgeon and can be anywhere from 1 to 3 weeks in duration.

 

Massage Chair

  • Allows you to sit in the face-down position without experiencing back or neck pain
  • Foldable light-weight structure and wheels make transport easy
  • Adjustable torso and seat height to accommodate your body type
  • Washable aluminum frame and upholstery
  • Includes hygienic face cover
  • Includes MajicView Mirror™

MajicView Mirror™ Included:
Allows you to see forward while seated in the Health Mark Price Massage Chair


The M.A.T.™

  • Allows you to comfortably lie in the face-down position
  • Ergonomic design reduces lower back discomfort
  • Ample breathing space for a comfortable sleep
  • Includes hygienic face cover

Prism Glasses

  • Allows you to see forward while maintaining face-down position.
  • Head strap for easy adjustability and support
  • Useful for working on the computer, eating meals, or watching television

Insurance Coverage

It may be possible to receive complete or partial coverage of the rental fees by private medical insurance companies. Please inquire directly with your insurance company. For more information on what to submit to your insurance company,

If you are unable to receive coverage for rental fees from your private health insurer, please note that rental fees on convalescence equipment are tax deductible. Please speak to your accountant for more information.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Your surgeon has asked you to maintain a face-down position after your Vitrectomy surgery. Keeping your face down will facilitate the healing process by forcing a gas bubble that was inserted into the eyeball during surgery against the posterior surface. The gas bubble exerts pressure on the macular hole, or the detached retina depending on the lesion type, so that the surgical adhesive can take effect. Maintaining the face-down position will also decrease the chances of cataract formation by reducing unwanted contact between the lens of the eyeball and the gas bubble. Another precaution is to avoid any activities that involve pressure changes, such as air travel, scuba diving, or ascending to high altitudes, as they may result in nerve damage. The length of time that one should remain face down will vary depending on the specifics of the surgery and will be recommended by your surgeon.

What is "face-down" positioning?

The position in which your face is parallel to the floor.

Do I have to lie down all the time?

Any position in which you remain face-down is okay. This may include sitting down with your head resting on a pillow that is placed on a table or simply standing with your neck bent. The latter suggestion may result in neck pain so alternative positions are encouraged. Each of our products helps you maintain this position with the least amount of physical strain.

Can I get up and walk around?

Standing and walking is okay as long as the face-down position is maintained. Since forward vision becomes difficult we suggest you be cautious while walking.

Is there anything I would do to prepare for the face-down period?

We encourage you to try various positions before your surgery so you are not experimenting during the early stages of recovery. Preparing meals before hand is also highly recommended.

How do I eat?

Positioning your chair as close to the table as possible with your plate near the edge will help keep your head down. Drinking can be made easy through the use of a straw. However, if eating becomes exceedingly uncomfortable you may lift your head for short periods of time if the face-down position is resumed shortly thereafter.

What about showering or bathing?

You may shower and bathe as usual if the face-down position is maintained. Try and avoid getting shower products in your eyes.

What about sleeping?

Our unique sleeping M.A.T.TM provides a means for sleeping safely as it contains sufficient breathing room. If you wake up in a different position, simply return to the proper position. Sleeping pills may be useful, but should be obtained through your doctor.

What about reading and watching television?

You can read simply by placing your book on a flat surface. However, eye movements slow the healing process, so reading time should be limited. As long as you maintain the face-down position you can watch television. This can be done most effectively using the Prism Glasses, or you the MajicView Mirror supplied with the chair.

How can I apply my eye drops if I'm looking down?

Eye drops can be applied as normal. The limited time with your head up will not hinder your recovery.

Will I be able to see immediately after surgery?

You will be able to see very little at first. Visual acuity will gradually improve from the top portions of your visual field downward as the gas bubble deteriorates. You may also notice a line in your vision. This is entirely normal.

Will I be in pain after the surgery?

The majority of people feel slight discomfort with sensations of scratching or aching. However, any significant pain should be reported to your doctor.

Will my eye be swollen after the surgery?

Swelling is normal. As well, your eyes may also be difficult to open. A warm moist washcloth can be used to open your eyes. Even if only one eyeball is operated on, the other eye may experience slight swelling as well.