See below. Epiretinal membranes are peeled when these membranes distort the macula (central retina) and thus the central vision. Vitrectomy is necessary in order to allow surgical instruments access to the membrane on the macula to peel it. This should improve central visual distortion. Vitrectomy always accelerates cataract formation, so a new intraocular lens replaces the cataract to focus light better.
Lots of eye drops! This is multiple surgeries for the eye. In general, it takes a few days to weeks and sometimes even a month or more to reach the best vision. The eye should be carefully observed for development of swelling or macular edema. You will likely have several different types of drops to take after surgery. One antibiotic, one anti inflammatory, and others. It can be confusing. Good luck.
Epiretinal Membrane. Sounds like your doctor may have recommended surgery for your epiretinal membrane or macular pucker (ERM) as it is possibly affecting your vision. Not sure what you are asking re 'what to do'. Are you asking if you should have the surgery or are you asking what you can do after surgery? Deciding to have a surgical procedure such as ERM repair should be discussed in detail with your eye surgeon.
Major surgery. You apparently have a cataract and an epiretinal membrane (erm). The erm causes wrinkling of the macular area with visual distortion. The cataract obstructs the view. Removal of the cataract and then doing a vitrectomy (removal of the gel in the back of the eye) allows removal by peeling off the erm. The removed cataract is replaced with a new lense. Retinal surgeons do this often.
Yes for. ... 4 different gases used in vitreoretinal surgery: air, sulfur hexafluoride (SF6), perfluoroethane (C2F6) and perfluoropropane (C3F8). In the vitreous cavity, these gases are colorless, odorless, inert, when injected into the vitreous cavity, air does not expand, whereas pure SF6, C2F6 and C3F8 gases do. High surface tension between gas and fluid allows effectivesealing of a retinal opening.
Can vitrectomy for epiretinal membrane cause glaucoma to worsen. I currently have 25% optic nerve damage.
Low risk. There is some transient increase in pressure during the surgery, but this is usually tolerated well unless you have severe optic nerve damage. Also, epiretinal membrane surgery is fairly short in duration. Your doctor will also monitor your eye pressure while you are on steroid drops after the surgery as they can also make your eye pressure go up. Good luck.
Gravity. When you are lying on your face, your retina is on the upper surface of your eyeball. If there is any air introduced into the eye during the procedure it will float to the top, and if there is any small amounts of bleeding, the red cells will fall away from the retina. There is some controversy over the need for face down, and some surgeons forego it -- please follow your surgeon's recommendations.