Rhegmatogenous retinal detachment (RRD) is a major cause of visual loss in developed countries. Proliferative vitreoretinopathy (PVR), an eye-sight threatening complication of RRD surgery, resembles a wound-healing process with inflammation, scar tissue formation, and membrane contraction. This study was performed to determine the possible involvement of a wide range of cytokines in the future development of PVR, and to identify predictors of PVR and visual outcome.
A multiplex immunoassay was used for the simultaneous detection of 29 different cytokines in subretinal fluid samples from patients with primary RRD. Of 306 samples that were collected and stored in our BioBank between 2001 and 2008, 21 samples from patients who developed postoperative PVR were compared with 54 age-, sex-, and storage-time–matched RRD control patients who had an uncomplicated postoperative course during the overall follow-up period.
Levels of IL-1α, IL-2, IL-3, IL-6, VEGF, and ICAM-1 were significantly higher (P<0.05) in patients who developed postoperative PVR after reattachment surgery than in patients with an uncomplicated postoperative course, whereas levels of IL-1β, IL-4, IL-5, IL-7, IL-9, IL-10, IL-11, IL-12p70, IL-13, IL-15, IL-17, IL-18, IL-21, IL-22, IL-23, IL-25, IL-33, TNF-α, IFN-γ, IGF-1, bFGF, HGF, and NGF were not (P>0.05). Multivariate logistic regression analysis revealed that IL-3 (P = 0.001), IL-6 (P = 0.047), ICAM-1 (P = 0.010), and preoperative visual acuity (P = 0.026) were independent predictors of postoperative PVR. Linear regression analysis showed that ICAM-1 (P = 0.005) and preoperative logMAR visual acuity (P = 0.001) were predictive of final visual outcome after primary RRD repair.
Our findings indicate that after RRD onset an exaggerated response of certain cytokines may predispose to PVR. Sampling at a time close to the onset of primary RRD may thus provide clues as to which biological events may initiate the development of PVR and, most importantly, may provide a means for therapeutic control.