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A 25-year-old member asked:

Is epiretinal membrane the same thing as macular pucker?

5 doctor answers14 doctors weighed in
Dr. Elizabeth Holland
Specializes in Ophthalmology
Yes: Yes, both terms describe the same condition. This condition results from a membrane forming from a remnant of vitreous that stays adherent to the retina after the vitreous separates from the retina. This condition may never cause visual issues, but in some people the membrane will wrinkle and may need to be surgically removed.
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Dr. Allen Chiang
Ophthalmology - Retinal Surgery 18 years experience
Cellophane maculopathy is also another term that means the same thing.
Oct 14, 2013
Dr. Andrew Shatz
Ophthalmology 28 years experience
Yes: Another term for this is a wrinkle. They are often used interchangeably to describe a condition where a membrane grows over the retina. It often occurs spontaneously, and can remain stable or grow over time. Treatment is directed at peeling the membrane off the retina, and is usually not offered unless vision decreases below a certain level (20/50 or worse, depending on the surgeon).
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Dr. Richard Scartozzi
Ophthalmology - Retinal Surgery 21 years experience
Synonyms include: epiretinal membrane (ERM), macular pucker, macular wrinkle, and cellophane maculopathy.
Jan 28, 2013
Dr. Bruce Saran
Ophthalmology 35 years experience
Yes and no: The macula is the central part of the retina that gives us our ability to read and see fine detail. Epiretinal membranes tend to grow over the macula, contract and thus wrinkle our macula. This produces a wrinle in the macula that "puckers" it. Hence the term "macular pucker." surgery can remove epiretinal membranes and reduce symptoms in advanced cases.
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Dr. Bernard Godley
Retinal Surgery 34 years experience
Same: They both describe a thin layer of scar tissue which covers the macula and causes visual distortion.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Colin McCannel
Retinal Surgery 32 years experience
Yes: Those terms mean the same thing. Additionally, sometimes a pucker is referred to as "scar tissue on the retina", and "epiretinal gliosis." when appropriate, surgery to remove the pucker may be a good idea to halt vision deterioration, or modestly improve vision. Best to see a retina specialist for this kind of problem.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.

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Last updated Sep 28, 2016
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