Post-operative instructions for patients with air or gas in their eye following Vitreo-Retinal Surgery

Information for patients

Download this resource pdf.

The following information has been compiled to help compliment the surgery and maximise the long term result.

(Patient details slip can be downloaded for completion from the link below if required)

Patient details (582kB pdf)

During your operation a bubble of Air or Gas was injected into your eye to assist in sealing the wounds and supporting the retina.

An air or gas bubble will be absorbed by the internal fluid circulation in the eye. The time varies depending upon the type of gas used from 1-4 weeks approximately. If you have a gas bubble in your eye you should not fly in an airplane until advised it is safe to do so by the doctor as the pressure difference affects the bubble size and can cause severe pain.

If you have a general anaesthetic for any reason while the gas bubble is still in your eye you must inform the anaesthetist.

You will see the bubble in your vision, initially it will fill most of your vision and your eyesight will be blurred. You may be aware of a moving black edge at the top of the blurred area. As the bubble gets smaller this black edge will move down your vision (when you are upright). If you change the position or move your head the bubble will move with you. Eventually you will see a circular bubble, which will settle in the bottom of your vision until it disappears.

You may experience some discomfort after surgery but if this becomes excessive and not controlled by simple painkillers, please phone the number overleaf.

If you develop nausea, vomiting, sudden loss of vision or reaction to your eye drops please also report this to the ward staff. The ward is open Monday – Friday.

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  • LN: 004310
  • Edition number: 4 Version 1
  • Developed by: Louise Ramsaha, Sister, Ophthalmic Day Unit
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