A macular pucker is scar tissue that has formed on the eye’s macula, located in the center of the light-sensitive tissue called the retina. The macula is necessary for sharp central vision that we need for reading, driving and seeing fine detail. When scar tissue forms, it squeezes the macula, causing wavy or blurry vision.
A macular pucker is usually a result of aging. But other eye conditions can also cause it. These include a detached retina, inflammation of the eye (uveitis) and diabetic retinopathy. Eye trauma can also cause it. Very rarely it can occur after cataract surgery.
Since most patients have only mild symptoms, they can best benefit from new glasses, reading lamps, and perhaps magnifiers. For patients with more severe symptoms, medical or surgical treatment may be appropriate.
If surgery is indicated, it can be done on an outpatient basis with local anesthesia and involves removing the vitreous (vitrectomy) and usually peeling off the cellophane-like scar tissue. This can help relieve the retinal traction, decreasing distortion of the vision, and improving visual acuity.