Outcomes and surgical management of persistent fetal vasculature

Nikhila Khandwala, Cagri Besirli, Brenda L. Bohnsack*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To analyse outcomes in different forms of persistent fetal vasculature (PFV). Retrospective cohort study at a university-based practice of children presenting with PFV between 2011 and 2020. Exclusion criteria was surgical management outside of our institution and follow-up less than 1 month. Wilcoxon and Student’s t-tests were used for statistical analysis. Forty-six eyes of 45 patients presented with PFV at 16.7±31.3 (median 2.8) months old with 32.6±29.8 (median 22.5) months of follow-up. Types of PFV included: mild combined anterior-posterior (23 eyes, 50%), severe combined anterior-posterior (18 eyes, 39%), severe anterior (3 eyes, 7%), mild anterior (1 eye, 2%) and posterior (1 eye, 2%). Thirty-two eyes (70%) underwent PFV surgical correction; lensectomy (13 mild combined), vitrectomy (3 mild combined), sequential lensectomy then vitrectomy (3 severe combined), combined lensectomy-vitrectomy (11 severe anterior or severe combined), laser retinopexy (1 mild combined). Five eyes required additional vitrectomy surgery for retinal detachment, fold or cyclitic membrane. Nine eyes developed glaucoma, six requiring Intraocular pressure (IOP)-lowering surgery. At final follow-up, 32 eyes had at least form vision and 6 eyes were aversive to light. Eight eyes, all which were severe combined, and four that did not undergo PFV surgery, were unable to detect light due to phthisis bulbi (7) and optic nerve hypoplasia (1). Classification of PFV is important in determining surgical approach with severe cases often requiring both lensectomy and vitrectomy for optimal anatomic and functional outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere000656
JournalBMJ Open Ophthalmology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 29 2021


  • embryology and development
  • genetics
  • glaucoma
  • retina
  • treatment surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


Dive into the research topics of 'Outcomes and surgical management of persistent fetal vasculature'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this