Main Article Content

The Fellow Eye of Retinal Detachment Patients: Vision and Clinical Presentation

A. Ibanga
O.N. Okonkwo
W. Ovienria
I. Oyekunle
T. Akanbi
D. Nkanga
C. Agweye
O. Adenuga
M. Udoh
Collaborative Retinal Research Network (CRRN) Study Report


Background: The fellow eye of a retinal detachment is at risk of developing a retinal detachment and other visually debilitating disease.  

Aim: To investigate the rate of bilaterality of retinal detachment (RD), the presenting visual acuity (VA), and the presence of ocular  morbidity in the fellow eye of patients with RD.

Patients and Methods: A multicenter, prospective, cross-sectional study examining the  fellow eye of consecutive patients who were diagnosed with different types of RD. The patients were seen within one year and examined  in four Nigerian eye hospitals and clinics. Demographics, VA, and clinical findings at the presentation were reported on examination of  the fellow eyes.

Results: Twenty-seven (11.4%) out of 237 patients (264 eyes) had an RD in the fellow eye. The mean age of all study  patients was 46.2 ± 16.8 years, M/F: 161 (67.9%)/76 (32.1%). The rates of bilaterality for rhegmatogenous, exudative, and tractional RDs  were 4.2%, 11.1%, and 31.1%, respectively. Diagnosis of RD in an eye was associated with a risk of developing fellow eye rhegmatogenous  retinal detachment (RRD) (P < 0.001) and tractional RD (P < 0.001), respectively. RRD in an eye was associated with a 17% risk of  developing RD in the fellow eye (β = −1.6, OR = 0.202, P < 0.001). The BCVA in the fellow eye of the three types of RD varied significantly (P  < 0.001). The fellow eye was blind in 25.2% of RRD, 54.1% of tractional retinal detachment (TRD), and 11.1% of exudative retinal  detachment (ERD). Bilateral RD eyes were blind in RRD (85.7%), TRD (71.1%), and ERD (50%). One hundred and seven eyes (40.5%) of the  total 264 RD eyes studied had other fellow eye events at the presentation.

Conclusion: A patient with an RD in one eye is at significant  risk of developing a blinding RD in the fellow eye. This risk varies with the type of RD and is highest with TRD. However, RRD, the  commonest type of RD, can benefit from prophylactic treatment to the fellow eye RD predisposing lesions. 

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 2229-7731
print ISSN: 1119-3077