Epiretinal Membrane

What Is an Epiretinal Membrane?

An epiretinal membrane (ERM) is a thin, fibrous tissue that can form on the surface of the retina, particularly the macula, which is responsible for sharp, central vision. This condition, sometimes referred to as macular pucker or cellophane maculopathy, typically occurs in people over the age of 50 and can lead to vision problems.

Symptoms of Epiretinal Membrane:

Symptoms of ERM are usually mild but can worsen over time, including:

  • Blurred or distorted central vision (straight lines may appear wavy)
  • Difficulty reading or performing tasks that require detailed vision
  • Mild to moderate vision loss, though severe vision loss is rare

Treatment for Epiretinal Membrane:

Treatment for ERM depends on the severity of the symptoms:

  • Observation: Many cases of ERM require no treatment, especially if the symptoms are mild.
  • Surgery: In more severe cases, a vitrectomy to remove the membrane may be recommended. This procedure involves removing the vitreous gel from the eye and gently peeling away the membrane from the retina.

Prevention of Epiretinal Membrane:

Currently, there are no known methods to prevent an epiretinal membrane, but maintaining overall eye health can be beneficial:

  • Regular comprehensive eye examinations, especially as you age, to detect changes in the retina.
  • Managing general health conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure, which can impact eye health.

To learn more about epiretinal membrane, its causes, diagnosis, and surgical options, visit your optometrist.

Please note that this information is provided for informational purposes only and should not substitute professional medical advice. If you suspect you have epirentinal membrane or any eye-related concerns, it is important to consult with an eye care professional for a proper evaluation and personalized recommendations.