Retinal Pigment Epithelial Tears: Patterns and Prognosis

Julia Haller Yeo, Sergiu Marcus, Robert P. Murphy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

88 Scopus citations


Increasing experience with the diagnosis of retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) tears has led to expanded recognition and understanding of this clinical entity. The authors report 18 RPE tears followed for an average of 28 months; 16 were associated with age-related macular degeneration and 2 with presumed ocular histoplasmosis syndrome. Retinal pigment epithelial dehiscences fell into four categories: nine spontaneous tears associated with choroidal neovascularization, one tear associated with an RPE detachment without choroidal neovascularization, four iatrogenic tears occurring at krypton treatment of choroidal neovascularization, and four iatrogenic tears developing weeks to months after laser treatment of choroidal neovascularization. Eight patients had a final visual acuity of 20/100 or better, four were 20/200, and six were 20/400 or worse. Photocoagulation, particularly with the use of krypton red laser, may be modified on the basis of possible RPE tear formation. Heightened awareness of the possibility of inducing pigment epithelial rips should improve diagnosis and management of these cases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-13
Number of pages6
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1988
Externally publishedYes


  • age-related macular degeneration
  • choroidal neovascularization
  • krypton red laser
  • laser photocoagulation
  • presumed ocular histoplasmosis syndrome
  • retinal pigment epithelial dehiscence
  • retinal pigment epithelial detachment
  • retinal pigment epithelial rip
  • retinal pigment epithelial tear
  • retinal pigment epithelium


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