Mete Gök, Michael Freistühler, E. Biewald, T. Gkika, Norbert Bornfeld (Essen, Germany)


Retinal capillary hemangiomas are the hallmark tumor lesions of eyes with Angiomatosis retinae (von Hippel-Lindau disease), which can cause significant loss of visual acuity through either exudative or tractional effects on the surrounding retina. Aim of this study is to describe retrospectively the indications for vitrectomy and functional outcome with secondary complications of patients with retinal capillary hemangiomas and Angiomatosis retina.


A retrospective case series of 15 patients with angiomatosis retina underwent pars plana vitrectomy due to major complications 1991 to 2008 after laser coagulation and radiation therapy.


Indication for vitreoretinal surgery was a retinal detachment in six patients of whom four had a complete retinal detachment with PVR. There was a severe macular pucker in two patients, another two had a dense vitreous bleeding, and one was afflicted with a thick epiretinal membrane. There was a recurring retinal detachment under silicone oil in two patients after 4,5 years and 1 months respectively leading to further major vitreoretinal surgery. All 5 patients (33,3%) were enucleated due to serious complications.

Discussion / Take home message:

Pretreated capillary retinal hemangiomas can progress secondary retinal complications, which can result in vision loss depending on the severity of the retinal involvement. The pars plana vitrectomy as therapeutic option can stabilize the visual outcome and can improve the prognosis of the eye.