Panretinal Photocoagulation: A Review of Complications.
Panretinal photocoagulation (PRP) is a mainstay of therapy for retinal ischemic disease. The procedure involves creating thermal burns in the peripheral retina leading to tissue coagulation, the overall consequence of which is improved retinal oxygenation. While highly effective, there have been concerns historically regarding the anatomic effects and visual complications following PRP, the most common of which include choroidal effusions, exudative retinal detachments, macular edema, visual field deficits, and night vision defects. The occurrence of these complications is closely tied to laser parameters such as increased duration and power and intensive treatment in a single sitting, all of which cause increased dispersion of thermal energy within the retina and choroid. The advent of newer laser delivery systems, such as the multispot pattern laser, has greatly mitigated but not eliminated these issues. The following article reviews the most common complications following PRP treatment, including reported occurrences, inciting factors, and underlying pathophysiology.
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